Bowdlerise: The movie was originally rated "R" in the United States, but the studio re-released it to theaters in a "PG" version with little to no profanity, drug use, and nudity. Wikipedia has a picture◊ of the poster that advertised it.
Defictionalization: The New York article on which the film was loosely based was bullshit, but Saturday Night Fever became the blueprint for nightlife in many cities.
Hollywood Pudgy: Donna Pescow (Annette) gained 30 lbs to better fit the role, as well as training herself back to her Brooklyn accent. (Immediately after the film was done, she set to work losing the extra weight and the accent.)
The Red Stapler: As the main article says, the film created a nationwide craze for Disco music and Disco dancing (together with discotheques), while before Disco was mostly confined to the New York and Philadelphia black and gay communities. Also, Travolta's suit from the movie instantly became fashionable.
Very Loosely Based on a True Story: "Tribal Rites of the New Saturday Night", a 1976 New York Magazine article. Ironically, it turns out that the article was completely fabricated (Nik Cohn actually based it on his memories of the 60s Mod scene in the UK).
While Saturday Night Fever has become a classic, its sequel, Staying Alive, came out after disco died, and was ripped to shreds by critics; one of them, Roger Ebert, added Staying Alive to his most hated movie list.