EXCLUSIVE: Actor-dancer-choreographer Beau “Casper” Smart (Step Up 3D) has been cast as Billy Kotsecki in Dirty Dancing, ABC’s three-hour remake of the hit Patrick Swayze-Jennifer Grey movie. The role was played by Neal Jones in the original film. In addition, J. Quinton Johnson has signed on as Marco, the lead singer and guitarist in Tito Suarez’s band and one of the stars at Kellerman’s.
Like the 1987 feature, ABC’s Dirty Dancing movie centers on Baby (Abigail Breslin), an innocent young woman in the early 1960s who vacations with her affluent parents and siblings in the Catskills and falls for Johnny (Cole Prattes), the resort’s charismatic, skilled dance instructor and leader of the working-class entertainment staff. Smart’s Billy is Johnny’s close friend from the old neighborhood. They grew up together and Johnny got him his job at Kellerman’s, for which he is grateful. Billy mostly works as a bellhop and does maintenance jobs for the staff. He likes to let loose and dance with Johnny and Penny after hours in the Staff Quarters – a world he inadvertently introduces Baby to, setting her on a journey of self-discovery. Sarah Hyland, Nicole Scherzinger and Debra Messing also star.
Smart co-stars in Perfect Match from Queen Latifah’s Flavor Unit Production. He’s repped by Untitled Entertainment and the Daniel Hoff Agency.
Newcomer Johnson made his acting debut with a co-starring role opposite Blake Jenner, Glen Powell and Tyler Hoechlin in Richard Linklater’s Everybody Wants Some! which just premiered as the opening-night film at SXSW. Linklater discovered Johnson at the University of Texas, where he was finishing his degree in Musical Theater. Johnson is repped by Atlas Artists and Collier Talent Agency.