Kevin Bacon Will Return to Footloose High School for 40th Anniversary & Prom Day

Kevin Bacon is going back to Payson High School, the Utah-based school where Footloose was shot more than four decades ago. Bacon recently announced on Today that he would be visiting Payson High on prom day, following an online campaign, #BaconToPayson, that saw students recreating scenes from the iconic film. Bacon's visit holds special significance this year, coinciding with the 40th anniversary of the film and marking the final year of Payson High School before it's relocated.

During his announcement (which was broadcast to students at the gym), Bacon shared:

"I have been so impressed with everything that's been going on there with this crazy idea to get me to come back. I've been amazed at the work that all of you have been putting into this, with the musical and the flash mobs and the re-creations. It hasn't gone unnoticed by me, not to mention the fact that you tied in, our foundation, and are trying to figure out ways to give back to your community," he continued. "It's really inspirational, so thank you. Thank you. And I'm gonna come. I gotta come!"

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As the youth celebrated Bacon's pending visit, The Toxic Avenger actor said:

"Thank you, guys. Let's dance!"

While Bacon won't attend the prom, he will visit the school on prom day during an event to benefit Bacon founded in 2007 on the principle that everyone needs connection. The organization aims to empower communities through youth, justice, and sustainability initiatives, focusing on underserved areas.

Footloose's Lasting Legacy as a 1980s Staple


Released in 1984 and directed by Herbert Ross, Footloose follows a rebellious Chicago teen named Ren McCormack (Bacon) who moves to a small town where dancing and rock music have been banned. The story follows Ren's fight to overturn the ban and his conflict with the town's conservative reverend (John Lithgow), who just happens to be the father of the girl Ren likes, Ariel Moore (Lori Singer). The film is a 1980s staple, gaining even more popularity for its soundtrack, which reached the top of the US Billboard 200 chart on April 21, 1984, and remained until June 23, 1984.

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The enduring popularity of Footloose is undeniable. In 2011, a remake starring Kenny Wormald, Julianne Hough, Andie MacDowell, and Dennis Quaid hit theaters. Bacon recently paid homage to the movie by recreating his iconic dance to celebrate the conclusion of the SAG-AFTRA strike. With Hollywood's recent love for nostalgia, fans might wonder if a Footloose sequel could happen. While there's no official announcement of a Bacon-led follow-up, his co-star Singer recently shared her idea for a sequel.

"I don't know if Kevin even remembers this, but I actually had sort of an idea where Ariel grows up and goes to New York where she wanted to be, and Kevin stays there. Kevin stays in the town, and he becomes a bigger deal in the town. That's where he becomes the town lawyer or whatever. She comes back because her father's sick. I mean, I just played with that idea years ago and we were talking about it and joking. But that was just something for us to meet on and talk about and laugh about," Singer said.

Bacon most recently starred in The Toxic Avenger and Leave the World Behind. Next, he will appear in Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F., opposite Eddie Murphy, and MaXXXine, the final installment of the X trilogy.

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