The actor famously asked the princess to dance with him at a White House state dinner in 1985.
The pair’s moment together on the dance floor spawned one of the most iconic moments of Princess Diana, wearing a dramatic Victor Edelstein gown, joining hands with the Grease star, dressed in a black tuxedo, as he led her around the room.
The 67-year-old spoke to Esquire Mexico and revealed that he had made no preparations to dance with the late Princess of Wales.
Travolta and Diana’s shot from a 1985 White House state dinner hosted by then-President Ronald Reagan and First Lady Nancy Reagan is considered one of the most iconic moments in history.
Opening up about that, Travolta said: “I didn’t think they’d ask me to dance with her. I had the great privilege and honor of doing so, and I thought, ‘There must be a reason for doing this and I better give it my all.’”
He said: ‘ I thought: “There must be a reason to do this and I better give it my all …”. This meant guiding the dance well and seeking to have fun. ‘That was the easy part, but introducing myself to Diana in the proper way, conveying assurance, and asking her to be my dance partner was a complicated mission.
Travolta said that the experience felt like a “fairytale” that he would continue to remember for decades to come.
“Think of the setting. We were at the White House. It’s midnight. The stage is like a dream. I approach her, touch her elbow, invite her to dance,” he said. “She spins around and gives me that captivating smile, just a little sad, and accepts my invitation. And there we were, dancing together as if it were a fairytale.”
He added, “Who could ever imagine something like that would happen to them someday? I was smart enough to stamp it in my memory as a very special, magical moment.”
The Saturday Night Fever star revealed previously that it was Nancy Reagan that told him Princess Diana wished to dance with him during an interview with Dutch television station Één.
“[She] said, ‘It is her wish,’ ” the actor recalled. “At midnight, I had to tap her on her shoulder, and I had to say, ‘Would you care to dance?’ She turned around and dipped her head in that Lady Diana way, and we were off for 15 minutes dancing.”
In an interview in 2007, the star credited that moment with Princess Diana as ‘saving’ his career, as he went on to appear in Pulp Fiction and Get Shorty. He told the Daily Mirror: ‘That was an amazing moment because I was having a dip in my career and no one was interested in me. ‘Suddenly, I was the only thing that mattered in America to Princess Diana. I was like “Wow! I matter to someone again”.’