People fall in love on movie sets all the time — actors seem to love being in love — but how many of those couples stay together for years after? It isn't happily ever after for everyone, but Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan Tatum met on the set of Step Up in 2006 (10 years ago, if you can believe it!), married in 2009, and have been my favorite Hollywood pairing ever since. I mean, did you see them on Lip Sync Battle ? True #relationshipgoals. The best part of their coupledom is that you can literally see them falling in love in Step Up — isn’t that a nice thing to have for children and grandchildren to have? “This is the moment I fell in love with your grandmother, kids!”
If you’ve never seen Step Up, the good part of the story starts when wrong-side-of-the-track guy Tyler Gage and his buddies break into the Maryland School of Arts in Baltimore and vandalize the school’s theater and auditorium. Tyler takes the fall for the crime, and he is sentenced to 200 hours of community service at the school. While at MSA, he meets Nora Clark, a senior in need of a partner for her senior recital. It turns out that Tyler can dance, and Nora takes a chance on Tyler to help her with her senior project. As Tyler and Nora grow closer, he has to balance his old life and new life, and things get complicated. Eventually, Tyler pushes Nora to be her best and perform at her recital, and Director Gordon, the head of MSA, sees how talented Tyler is and allows him in as a transfer student. And they all live happily ever after!
Sure, other stuff happens in the movie, too, but all I care about are the scenes with the Tatums giving each other googly eyes. According to People, Tatum and Dewan Tatum didn’t start dating until after the movie wrapped, but it’s pretty obvious to tell they were falling in love, especially in these key scenes.
1. Dancing Over The Harbor
This is the first time in the movie that Step Up explores the idea that Tyler and Nora are beginning to have feelings for each other, and it’s so romantic. The water! The sunset! The harbor cranes in the background! Oh, and that slow, sultry music playing over the scene? They knew they would make babies after they shot this one.
2. The Club Scene
Though I’m always annoyed when people just break out into choreographed dances a la She’s All That, I wholly appreciate watching Tyler and Nora give each other sexy eyes during gender-specific choruses.
3. The First Time Tyler Sees Nora
Tyler is pissed because he's starting his community service, and then he sees Nora at dance practice and — bam — he's like, mopping? I'll mop all day if I get to stare at her.
4. The First Time Nora Sees Tyler Dance
I can't blame Nora for this one — I also fell in love with Channing Tatum the first time I saw him dance, and every Magic Mike movie just makes my life worse knowing I can't have him.
5. The First Lift
Sorry, Ryan Gosling, but the Tatums did the second sexy lift in cinematic history — not you. And then they had a baby together, which you can't say about Gosling and Emma Stone.
6. When Tyler Quits
No good relationship is without a good fight every now and then, and this is the first (onscreen, at least) between Nora and Tyler.
7. Tyler's Ballet Class
There's nothing more adorable than a handsome man surrounded by children, even if those children are little ballerinas telling him to stop giggling.
8. The Last Scene
Nora is about to blow her important senior recital, and who is there to help encourage her, give her a pep talk, and plant a big, fat smooch on her at the end. Tyler, of course! And it was at that moment that Tatum knew he was going to propose (probably. I don't know).
This is modern romance, you guys, and I love watch it unfold.
Images: Touchstone Pictures; Giphy