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The Outsiders, Patrick Swayze and the Brat Pack

Updated on July 3, 2013

From book to big screen....

Back in 1983 my plan wasn't to see The Outsiders, it just happened.

The plan was to see Flashdance but it was sold out so my friend suggested we check out The Outsiders.

I hesitated because I didn't know any of the actors in the movie, BUT all that changed within 91 minutes and the rest is history.

I did eventually see Flashdance about many, many times!

The Outsiders

Here I am 30 years later and this movie still has an impact on me. It still amazes me how the seed for this movie came from a 15 year old girl.

The author S.E. Hutton was so upset after witnessing her friend getting attacked for being a Greaser in 1965 that she decided to write a story. S.E. Hutton was 15 years old when she began writing.

Her first book "The Outsiders" was published when she was a freshman in college at age 18. She wanted to share the Greasers point of view. In my opinion she did an outstanding job!

S.E. Hutton currently resides in Tulsa, Oklahoma where The Outsiders movie was filmed. She prefers a private lifestyle which might be why you haven't heard much about her. Francis Ford Coppola directed this unique, point of view classic.

The book still continues to sell close to 500,000 copies a year. The Outsiders is a gift that keeps on giving. There will always be new generations who will be intrigued with the saga of the Greasers and the Socs.

This movie has taught many about the importance of friendship and kindness. It's about having someone's back. It sets an example on how we shouldn't judge others by their appearance.

If you haven't seen this coming of age teen drama yet I highly suggest it no matter what your age is. We could all relate in one way or another.

Thank you S.E. Hutton for sharing your thoughts with us! Go Greasers!

Stay Gold sung by Stevie Wonder written by Carmine Coppala

Introducing the Brat Pack of the 80's

The Many Stars of The Outsiders

Patrick Swayze was the oldest brother of Ponyboy and Soda. He was the one with the common sense. His character Darrel was the one the Greasers turned to in time of need. This was Patrick's third movie. Patrick was well-known for his tough guy roles. He cemented his stardom with Dirty Dancing and Ghost. His career spanned 30 years until he lost his battle with pancreatic cancer in 2009. "Nobody puts baby in the corner."

Rob Lowe was the middle child Sodapop. His character was always reliable, dependable with a bit of an attitude. This greaser could throw a mean punch when needed for a rumble! This was Rob's first big screen movie. He joined other members of The Brat Pack starring in St. Elmo's Fire. He had a reputation for having a playboy lifestyle, got into a bit of trouble which helped guide him on the right track.

C. Thomas Howell was the younger brother, Ponyboy. Oh yes, Ponyboy. He was well adored by many. He relied on his older brothers for guidance and support. Ponyboy had a heart of gold. This was C. Thomas Howell's first movie even though he began acting at age four. His original plan was to be a stuntman. He went on to other films and is scheduled to star in The Amazing Spiderman in 2012.

Matt Dillon was the all-time favorite bad boy. Trouble always followed Dallas Winston. The Outsiders was Matt's 8th movie. He went on to The Flamingo Kid. Matt's movies weren't blockbusters but they left his fans impressed and looking forward to his next. My favorite Matt Dillon movie is Crash where he played Officer John Ryan, but that's another hub. Matt has done very well for himself considering he was discovered by talent scouts walking the halls of his high school. They liked his looks and asked him to do a casting call. Luckily, he passed.

Emilio Estevez also known as Two-Bit was a friend of the brothers and had everyone's back. This was Emilio's second big screen movie. He went on to fame with The Breakfast Club, St Elmo's Fire among many other successful flicks! He's the son of Martin Sheen (Ramon Estevez) and brother to Charlie Sheen (Carlos Estevez). I'm sure Emilio has tales to tell. Emilio didn't want his career based on being Martin Sheen's son so he opted out of using his father's stage name and continues to use the original family name Estevez. Tidbit: For fans of the movie "A Night At The Roxbury" ... all Emilio references are regarding this fantastic actor! Emilio, Emilio, Emilio!

Tom Cruise played Steve. A fellow Greaser. His role wasn't as vital as the others. This was his third movie. The flick Risky Business cemented Tom's name and as we know the rest is history. Thomas Cruise Mapother has done very well for himself considering his original life plan was to become a priest. Who would have thought? Tidbit: His ex-wife Nicole Kidman is now married to Keith Urban. (Irrelevant to this bio but it's KU!)

Ralph Macchio played Johnny, Ponyboy's best friend. He was the most lovable character in my opinion. This was his second movie, but did many commercials. This Grasshopper went on to fame in 1984 with the Karate Kid movies! My favorite movie of Ralph's is My Cousin Vinny! Classic hit! Tidbit: Ralph came in fourth place in Season 12 of Dancing With The Stars in 2011! "Wax on, wax off"

The Outsiders movie trailer

The Outsiders Poll

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    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 5 years ago from Orlando, FL

      The Outsiders is an excellent movie for so many reasons...enjoy Mike!!

    • Mike Robbers profile image

      Mike Robbers 5 years ago from London

      Great movie and a good chance to see how some big Hollywood stars were when younger:)

      Truthful and powerful, the way movies have to be sometimes.

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 5 years ago from Singapore

      I actually taught the novel and loved did the kids! Thanks for sharing this, Linda!! Voted up and passing it on!

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      HSB, I highly recommend the movie! You will enjoy it!:)

      Hi Lyric, Thanks for your comment!:)

    • thelyricwriter profile image

      Richard Ricky Hale 6 years ago from West Virginia

      Voted up, useful, and awesome Sunshine. It is a great classic. I read the book first in grade school many years ago, but I never remembered it. The movie, I will never forget. Well done. Great tribute!

    • homesteadbound profile image

      Cindy Murdoch 6 years ago from Texas

      I hae not seen the movie or read the book, but you have piqued my curiosity, especially with what you just stated about being able to watch it on youtube. Thanks

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Hi Stoker, I tried many times to get you to watch this movie...hopefully now you will. A fan was kind enough to download the movie on YouTube in 14 videos. Part one is the video above AND it's FREE! :)

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Hi Malin, I absolutely recommend watching it again and then again! S.E. Hinton still received hundreds of pieces of fanmail on a daily basis. Even though she opted for Oklahoma instead of Hollywood she remains very popular today. Thanks for your comment!

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Hi Gee! Johnny didn't come onto the scene until 1984 (after hooking up with Nicholas Cage) or else he would have been an excellent addition to this Brat Pack! :)

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Hi Real! I might never have know about The Outsiders if Flashdance wasn't sold out! I'm guessing my school was one of the schools that banned the book...I do remember Jonathan Livingston Seagull books being required reading. I can still watch the movie today for the 100th time and still enjoy it. I'm glad you enjoyed the tribute :)

    • b. Malin profile image

      b. Malin 6 years ago

      I probably saw it back then...But to think how all these young Actors and Actress went on to become Popular Movie Stars some Icons in their own right...I'd be tempted to see it again after reading your Wonderful review Sunshine. I'm impressed that your Friend, though Famous for writing this book, took the Low road, Instead of going Hollywood. Thanks for a Wonderful Hub.

    • geegee77 profile image

      geegee77 6 years ago from The Lone Star State!!

      The only cast member missing was Johnny Depp, wouldn't that have been interesting?:)

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Sunshne! One of my favorite Books and Movie! I read that book in 6th grade - it made a huge impression on me. I still have my copy and my daughters just saw it with my husband. Fantastic choice to write about! I was so impressed by this book and one other I read that year it was, "The Pearl" by there's another great story!

      Thanks Sunshine! For shining through the windows this morning and the PC!

    • Stokermm profile image

      Stokermm 6 years ago from Gainesville, FL

      Looks like a good movie!! You made me intrigued :)

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Thank you Linda and American View for your comments and votes! Stay Gold :)

    • American View profile image

      American View 6 years ago from Plano, Texas

      By the way, Up and Awesome

    • American View profile image

      American View 6 years ago from Plano, Texas

      A great article about a great book with a solid message. This book hits home for me having grown up on the streets of NY. The fight for turf and social recognition still continues not only on the streets today, but in Washington as well as they try to pit Americans against each other in class warfare

    • Linda1971 profile image

      Linda1971 6 years ago

      Sunshine625, I love the movie! very nice hub

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image

      FloraBreenRobison 6 years ago

      Sunshine-yes he is doing well again. He was on Brothers and sisters too, but after leaving the West wing, he hit a dry spell. He has also written a book. Hopefully he can stay on top again.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      @Flora word is Rob is doing well on Parks and Recreation, I don't watch it but he has a recurring role.

      @Paula I sent this hub to that 15 year old girl maybe she'll pay us a visit :)

      @Alecia I also hope they don't remake it. I for one am tired of remakes. What happened to moving forward not backward? Rumor is a remake is under consideration, let's hope it's just a rumor.

    • Alecia Murphy profile image

      Alecia Murphy 6 years ago from Wilmington, North Carolina

      Wonderfully written hub as usual Sunshine! I absolutely loved this movie. It has to be one of my top 80s flicks for sure. The casting was genius. When I read Rob Lowe's autobiography, the casting call pretty much sounded like a young hollywood bootcamp. I just hope they decide against remaking this.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 6 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Sunshine. Without question, this is one of my all-time favorites. I'm sure I watched the video until I wore it out. I especially love the theme song by Stevie Wonder, "Stay Gold." Wonderful cast,story and of course, the moral is immortal. I was amazed and very impressed that this incredible story was written by a 15 year old. Thank you for this pleasant walk down Memory Lane......superb hub, Linda!

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image

      FloraBreenRobison 6 years ago

      All of Martin Sheen's 4 children are in the entertainment business. Charlie (Carlos) was the only one who wanted to help his career along by using Sheen's stage name. I didn't see this movie until I was in grade eight and read the book in English class. We watched the movie afterwards. I still enjoy this movie, but I find that my original perception after seeing the film right after reading the book was much higher than my opinion now. I prefer The Breakfast Club a lot more now and I used to equate them about the same.

      It is fascinating how the actors went on to varying degrees of success. Patrick and Tom went on to become huge stars, Rob and Emilio have been up and down (Rob should not have quit The West Wing) and others haven't done much since that decade.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      @Bryan, I can so picture you being a greaser! Post photos!!! :)

    • Mentalist acer profile image

      Mentalist acer 6 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      I identify with this movie as the greasers became the misfits in my time and I was a part of that group.;)

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Hi dungeon! I'm glad to hear this book was required reading for school hopefully it helped cut back on bullying.

      Hi Sue! I'm glad I was able to bring back a good memory for you!

      Hi Ge! Stay Gold is a classic hit and saying ... I use it often :)

      Hi Cogerson! Thanks for researching the casting director! Your assistance is greatly appreciated!

    • Cogerson profile image

      Cogerson 6 years ago from Virginia

      Excellent movie hub...what a cast...whoever was the casting director needs to get some credit for this movie as well...checking right back..that would be Janet Hirshenson....way to go Janet job well done.

      I liked hearing about how a movie experience is still a vivid memory 28 years ago to you....I remember this movie playing on HBO on a regular basis and always watching...and it was always fun to see these young actors go on to bigger things....but they all got labeled with..."he first became noticed in The Outsiders"....a fun entertaining hub that I vote up and awesome.

    • geegee77 profile image

      geegee77 6 years ago from The Lone Star State!!

      Omg Sunshine thank you so much for this hub, this book was also a required reading for me too in school and I loved it. This is on the top ten of my favorite movies of all time. Johnny was my favorite character in the film. I always cry when I watch it. And that song Stay Gold is on my playlist love, love it, it gives me goosebumps every time I hear it. Great job my friend and thanks for the memories. Now I wanna watch it again!!:) ge

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      SUE 6 years ago


    • dungeonraider profile image

      Jason Marovich 6 years ago from United States

      The Outsiders was required reading for me in school and I saw the movie in the theater. What can I say, they had cool hair. Thanks for the memory :)