Debra Messing
Credit: D Dipasupil/Getty

Debra Messing is having a major year.

In addition to her duties as the newly-minted celebrity ambassador of CoolSculpting, Messing is busy raising a 13-year-old boy (no small feat), gearing up for her return to Will & Grace this August, and promoting ABC’s Dirty Dancing remake, in which she plays Baby’s mom, Marjorie Houseman.

Messing’s role in the remake, which airs May 24, is more than just a job for the accomplished actress, it’s an homage to the film that inspired her to follow her dreams.

A “HUGE” Dirty Dancing fan, Messing first went to see the film back when it hit theaters.

Dirty Dancing
Credit: Archive Photos/Getty

“I was in the movie theater with my mom and I looked up and I thought, ‘Oh my God, I’m Baby,’” she said of her first time seeing the cult classic. “I was convinced I was Baby, because I was Jewish, and I was awkward, and I was a klutz. I just saw myself. And it was kind of a turning point for me because at that point I was doing theater in my schools and I wanted to be an actress, and I was going to be a theater actress, because I didn’t see anyone who looked like me on TV or in the movies. And then I went to Dirty Dancing, and I saw Baby, I saw Jennifer Grey, and I thought ‘Oh my God, there really is a place for me in Hollywood.’”

Movie magic in action!