Olivia Newton-John Says Death of John Travolta's Wife Kelly Preston Makes Her 'More Determined' to End Cancer

Olivia Newton-John recalled some sweet memories with her Grease co-star John Travolta in a new interview this week. She also remembered his late wife, Kelly Preston, as a "lovely woman" and said her death only "strengthened" her resolve to find a way to end cancer. Newton-John, 72, has always been open about her own cancer battle. She beat breast cancer twice, but she was diagnosed with cancer again in 2017.

During a new interview with Us Weekly, Newton-John described her first kiss with Travolta during the making of Grease in 1978. "It was a beautiful day," she said of filming the scene between Danny and Sandy at the beach. "We were playing around in the water, and I don’t really remember exactly, but it was a very lovely day and an exciting moment because it was the start of the film, although everything was kind of out of order, but we did that. That was the first time we had kissed."

Newton-John was "nervous" about filming the scene since they hardly knew each other before they had to kiss. The "rogue waves" that crashed on the beach made things a little more difficult. They had met during rehearsals, but that scene at the beach was the first time they acted together. However, that was the start of a friendship that lasts to this day.

"John is a lovely, sweet man," Newton-John told Us Weekly. "And he made all my acting experiences really easy. He was very thoughtful and encouraged me if he thought I wasn’t doing a good enough job." She later explained, "There are a few times where I had to be mad at him or upset, and he was kind of off with me and not talking to me and kind of got me on edge, which is perfect for the scene because I needed to be that way. And I wasn’t an experienced actor. So he kind of directed me a couple of times. He did it on purpose."

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Elsewhere in her interview with Us Weekly, the "Physical" singer spoke fondly about Preston, who died in July 2020 at 57, following a private battle with breast cancer. "Kelly was a lovely woman and incredibly tragic loss," Newton-John said. "It just strengthened my resolve to find an end to cancer." She added that losing friends and loved ones "just makes me more determined to do this research."

Newton-John also provided an update on her own cancer battle, telling the outlet she is doing "really well" thanks to her husband, John Easterling, and his "plant medicine." She also said her positive attitude is helping, as well as "talking to my body and doing all the things that I can to support myself emotionally and mentally." Newton-John, who recently established the Olivia Newton-John Foundation, is still performing. She just released the single "Window in the Wall," featuring her daughter, Chloe Lattanzi.