Jeffersonville Pizza Department started the day off on Facebook with a note regarding the presence of pizza in certain movies. Writers do not generally insert food scenes randomly, nor is the choice of food random. Some food mark a strong cultural element, even when on screen for only a brief moment. Some foods provide product placement opportunities, in this case, an iconic NY pizzeria.
The opening scene of Saturday Night Fever (1977), also known as “the pizza strut,” features New York’s Lenny’s Pizza, now Lenny’s Pizzeria, a fixture in Queens since 1953.
Even the younger generations have heard of this classic movie, starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton John. Its title alone is timeless. Indeed, the setting is as culturally grounded today as pizza itself: A young man finds release from life’s pressures while immersed in the music that transports him to a universe better than his own.
When you think about it, in youth, we first taste freedom when we get to buy our own food with money we earn at our first jobs. Some of these job environments are downright dysfunctional, yet to be able to buy even a slice of pizza and to dance, on a Saturday night, makes one feel like the world is right after all. Interestingly, Saturday Night Fever was based on a 1976 New York Magazine article titled, Tribal Rites of the New Saturday Night.
The wide array of eateries on American streets is unique. Not only is this an ideal backdrop for film and television storytelling, but it is that precisely because food is common ground; it brings people together and it brings individuals to a pause, providing sustenance to fuel things to come. And pizza may have Italian origins, but it is as deeply American as Brooklyn, New York.
See other Famous Dinner (food) Scenes
Create your own Pizza Strut ~ JPD Menu