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Old 09-04-2012, 03:51 AM   #1
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Default What the Hell Happened to John Travolta?

http://lebeauleblog.com/2012/09/02/w...john-travolta/

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John Travolta is the King of the Comeback. Where most careers involve a rise and a fall, Travolta’s career is a roller coaster or peaks and valleys. In the 70′s, he was a pop culture icon, in the 80′s he was a has-been and in the 90′s, he reinvented himself as an Oscar-nominated tough guy. Today, you’re more likely to see him on tabloid covers than headlining a movie. What the hell happened?

Travolta started off on the stage in New York in the touring production of Grease. Eventually, he moved to California where he started making TV appearances like The Boy in The Plastic Bubble.

We’ve got a lot to cover here, so we’re just going to skip to 1975 when Travolta was cast in Welcome Back Kotter. Kotter was a sitcom developed around stand-up comedian, Gabe Kaplan. Kaplan played a teacher at an inner-city school and Travolta played one of his delinquent students known as the “Sweathogs”.

Kotter was a big hit during its first couple of seasons. This lead to lots of merchandising opportunities including a board game based around Travolta’s catch phrase, “Up your nose with a rubber hose.”


Interestingly enough (for me anyway), the actor standing-in for Travolta in that commercial was a young Steve Guttenberg.

While still appearing on Welcome Back Kotter, Travolta made the leap to film with Brian De Palma’s adaptation of Stephen King’s novel, Carrie.

By now, there have been umpteen adaptations of King’s novels. Some have been adapted more than once. A remake of Carrie is currently underway. But De Palma’s Carrie was the first and it set the bar too high for most of the adaptations that would follow.

Travolta’s role was relatively small. He played the boyfriend of Carrie’s primary tormentor, Chris, who was played by Nancy Allen. But Travolta was involved in some of the movie’s more memorable scenes. He was the one who slaughtered the pig for the bloody climax. And when a blood-soaked Carrie left the flame-engulfed prom, Travolta’s character tried to run her over.

The following year, Travolta entered pop culture history with Saturday Night Fever. The image of Travolta in the white leisure suit dancing to the Bee Gees is bigger than any movie. It has come to symbolize an entire decade.

But Saturday Night Fever is nothing like its image. The soundtrack may make you want to dance, but the movie is actually a depressing melodrama about a guy who feels trapped in a meaningless existence he can only escape on the dance floor.

The movie was based on an article in New York magazine about the budding disco culture, Tribal Rites of the New Saturday Night. Ironically, the writer of the article later admitted that he had made it all up. As an Englishman, he was baffled by the American dance craze. So he based his story on a “Mod” friend instead.

Saturday Night Fever got mostly positive reviews. It was nominated for several awards including Best Actor for Travolta. Film critic, Gene Siskel claimed Fever as a personal favorite. He even went so far as to buy Travolta’s leisure suit at an auction.

Fever wasn’t just a hit. It was a smash that dominated the pop culture landscape. It ushered in the Disco Era. The soundtrack was the best-selling soundtrack album of all times. Eventually, the popularity of disco eclipsed the movie. So when the disco backlash started, Saturday Night Fever was marginalized along with it.

In 1978, Travolta was still appearing on Welcome Back Kotter. But he was no longer a regular. Instead, he was credited as a “special guest star”.
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Old 09-04-2012, 08:18 AM   #2
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One has to remember that the 1980's were really unkind to John Travolta and his career nearly and literally died for whatever reason. More than likely, people associated him with the bygone 1970's. Kotter and Saturday Night Fever.

He did "Look Who's Talking", but to be frank, any B lister could have done that. His other movies were flops and panned. Not a big Tarentino fan (although his movies are very good if you like the genre), but he is very good at casting so called "has been" actors (Pam Grier is another example), and he put Travolta in Pulp Fiction which became a smash and the rest is history.


I do not think much of him as an actor, and I think he has gotten very, very lucky with his career. I will give him credit as a family man who has stayed married to his wife for 21 years, unlike a lot of Hollywood goofballs out there.
Personally, I think all the gay accusations is garbage by people looking for a fast buck and 15 minutes of fame. If Travolta was gay, I think he would be out and say "I'm gay." Maybe, maybe not, because I do not know him. I do not think he is a bad guy. However, I wish he would get out of the "religion" he is in.

For whatever reason, he became a Scientologist as a young man when Kotter began and he has stuck with it and credits his success to it, which is sad to me. I think his kid Jett would be alive today if Travolta was not mixed up in that junk. Not to say that Travolta was responsible fully, but I think Jett could have had help like therapy which the Scientologists eschewed. They told Travolta that the kid has engrams.

I thought when Jett died, Travolta might wake up and flee Scientology but he hasn't done so. If the worse that Scientology has on him is that he is bisexual, that is not a biggie (except maybe with the wife, who should know after 21 years in Hollywood where nothing is secret or sacred that her husband is gay part time).

Last edited by Yong Fang; 05-02-2013 at 08:34 AM.
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Old 09-05-2012, 04:11 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yong Fang
I think his kid Jett would be alive today if Travolta was not mixed up in that junk. Not to say that Travolta was responsible fully, but I think Jett could have had help like therapy which the Scientologists eschewed. They told Travolta that the kid has engrams.

I thought when Jett died, Travolta might wake up and flee Scientology but he hasn't done so.
Wow, never thought about that but I haven't heard good things about Scientology at all. It's a really strange "religion" or whatever you call it!
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:31 PM   #4
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I respect the hell out of John, but probably he wasn't totally focused on his career choices in the 80's as he should have been.I do agree that his son Jett might be still alive today if he wasn't mixed up in Scientology, but there are probably others things as well.Personally, i have always hoped the gay rumors are not true.He's a great talent and performer.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:25 AM   #5
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Yeah,no matter how you slice this one,Travolta has certainly been a major pop culture icon,all the way from the imbecilic ramblings of Vinnie Barbarino to the sociopathic mindset of his "Pulp Fiction" character.I wonder if John really enjoys a good "Le Big Mac"?!
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Old 01-16-2015, 02:20 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yong Fang
One has to remember that the 1980's were really unkind to John Travolta and his career nearly and literally died for whatever reason. More than likely, people associated him with the bygone 1970's. Kotter and Saturday Night Fever.

He did "Look Who's Talking", but to be frank, any B lister could have done that. His other movies were flops and panned. Not a big Tarentino fan (although his movies are very good if you like the genre), but he is very good at casting so called "has been" actors (Pam Grier is another example), and he put Travolta in Pulp Fiction which became a smash and the rest is history.


I do not think much of him as an actor, and I think he has gotten very, very lucky with his career. I will give him credit as a family man who has stayed married to his wife for 21 years, unlike a lot of Hollywood goofballs out there.
Personally, I think all the gay accusations is garbage by people looking for a fast buck and 15 minutes of fame. If Travolta was gay, I think he would be out and say "I'm gay." Maybe, maybe not, because I do not know him. I do not think he is a bad guy. However, I wish he would get out of the "religion" he is in.

For whatever reason, he became a Scientologist as a young man when Kotter began and he has stuck with it and credits his success to it, which is sad to me. I think his kid Jett would be alive today if Travolta was not mixed up in that junk. Not to say that Travolta was responsible fully, but I think Jett could have had help like therapy which the Scientologists eschewed. They told Travolta that the kid has engrams.

I thought when Jett died, Travolta might wake up and flee Scientology but he hasn't done so. If the worse that Scientology has on him is that he is bisexual, that is not a biggie (except maybe with the wife, who should know after 21 years in Hollywood where nothing is secret or sacred that her husband is gay part time).
The Church of Scientology does audits with its members don't forget. That means they have all kinds of intimate in depth details about his thoughts, feelings, predilections, fantasies, fears etc. As long as he's been in the church they've been collecting information. Far beyond exposing him being gay they could expose way, way, way more stuff than that.
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Old 01-16-2015, 05:40 PM   #7
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I don't think John Travolta did a lot of bad movies. He's done several good ones that I like such as Basic with Samuel Jackson and Taye Diggs, Broken Arrow with Christian Slater, Face Off with Nicolas Cage, From Paris With Love, The Punisher, Savages, The Taking Of Pelham 123 with Denzel Washington, Swordfish with Halle Berry and Don Cheadle, Saturday Night Fever, Look Who's Talking 1 and 2. I'm gonna look at imdb.com to see what other movies that he's done that I liked. He's a good actor and who cares if people think he might not have had a successful acting career because most of his movies didn't make a lot of money. I'm kinda worried though that he might be bisexual because I just saw a article today at another website where he approached a white man at a fitness club in Florida recently at 3am and asked him if he was married and had kids hahahahahahahahaha. He has a hot wife Kelly Preston and he should only be interested in her. I didn't know he's been married to her 21 years.
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Old 01-16-2015, 07:29 PM   #8
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Yeah he is a great talent and I respect his decisions whether he is or just rumored to being homosexual is just the tabloids, and if the rumors are true life goes on people.
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Old 01-17-2015, 01:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schmoopie
Wow, never thought about that but I haven't heard good things about Scientology at all. It's a really strange "religion" or whatever you call it!
It's not a religion, it's a cult.
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Old 07-28-2015, 10:37 PM   #10
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At the age of 61, I don't think he can revisit too many of his 70's roles and I think his resurgence in the 90's was mostly due to the novelty of him being cast as a charming, but cold blooded, hit-man in Pulp Fiction. He played against type and it brought him allot of good will by audiences who perhaps missed his star from the 70's.

But he's considerably older now, and being worth $165 million certainly helps him pick his projects with perhaps less worry for commercial appeal and more out of personal enjoyment. But how many stars have his resume? I think his legacy is safe.
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Old 08-05-2015, 04:53 AM   #11
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John Travolta and his assorted career comebacks
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Old 08-05-2015, 05:41 AM   #12
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He is still a fantastic actor and I suspect he is just taking a little break at the moment. He will get roles again in the future.
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Old 08-05-2015, 01:09 PM   #13
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I loved him in Urban Cowboy! I think it was one of his best roles. I loved that movie!

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Old 08-05-2015, 02:00 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Planet Claire
He is still a fantastic actor and I suspect he is just taking a little break at the moment. He will get roles again in the future.
I don't think he's taking a break, he's in a brand new film The Forger released just recently. And now has 4 movies (5 if you count his voice work in the upcoming Gummi Bears movie) coming out, including a western with Ethan Hawke.
I think he's like Harrison Ford, and just is very choosy about what he appears in, the last few years he's averaged about 1 film a year.
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Old 08-05-2015, 02:05 PM   #15
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One of my favorite movies is a John Travolta movie from the 80s- Blow Out, written and directed by Brian De Palma, who of course directed Travolta in Carrie, and Carrie co-star Nancy Allen stars alongside John. Also features John Lithgow, and Dennis Franz. Fantastic, underrated thriller.
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