John Travolta Shares New Details About His Iconic Dance With Princess Diana

John Travolta dancing with Princess Diana at President Ronald Reagan's white house is peak 80s glam. To this day, photos of the famous actor twirling the young Diana characterize the Princess' legacy as a pop culture icon. But, according to Town and Country, it wasn't his idea to ask her to dance; it was the First Lady's.

Nancy Reagan was notorious for throwing lavish parties for celebrities and famous figures at the White House during her husband's time in office. In the recently-aired PBS special "In Their Own Words: Diana Princess of Wales", Travolta opened up about the experience. People reports that the "Grease" superstar felt extremely humbled by the atmosphere, noting that he felt he "was an extra in a room of very important people."

Even though he felt nervous and starstruck, the First Lady brought her request to him. "About 10 o'clock at night, Nancy Reagan tapped on my shoulder and said, 'The princess, her fantasy is to dance with you. Would you like to dance with her tonight?' And I said, 'Well of course.'"

In true Cinderella fashion, Reagan brought Travolta over to the Princess around midnight to share a dance. "My heart starts to race, you know, and I tap her on the shoulder and she turns around and looks at me, and she had that kind of bashful dip [of her chin] that she did, and she looked up at me, and I said, 'Would you care to dance with me?'"

The room cleared out when the two started to dance

Just like in the movies, their dance silenced the room and quickly cleared out the floor. "I took her and the whole room cleared," the actor remembered. "We danced for what felt like 15 minutes."

The photos show a confident Princess who had come into her prime as a global figure. As royal historian, Kate Williams, explained to People, "When Diana went to America in 1985, it cemented her place on a world stage. She was no longer this young, naive girl. She was a huge celebrity, the most famous woman in the world. Di-mania spread from Britain across the world, and then it seized the world."

If you've watched "The Crown", you'll know that Diana loved to dance and, at the time, Travolta was the king of the floor. Unfortunately, they didn't chat too much afterward. "It was a storybook moment. We bowed when it was over, and, you know, she was off, and I was off, and my carriage turned into a pumpkin,"  Travolta lamented.

A story fit for a fairytale, the dance has stood the test of time as pop culture lore and now, 36 years later, we know a little about what went on behind the scenes on that iconic night.