The Wiz Cast

TVLine Items: Ne-Yo, Common Join Wiz; Gotham Adds Wire Vet and More

The Wiz‘s Dorothy now has all the travel companions she needs to ease on down the road.

R&B singer Ne-Yo and Elijah Kelley (Hairspray) will play the Tin Man and Scarecrow, respectively, in NBC’s live production of the musical, network president Bob Greenblatt announced Thursday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour in Beverly Hills.

Additionally, Grammy-winning musician Common will fill the non-singing, comedic role of the gatekeeper to Oz.

Airing Thursday, Dec. 3, The Wiz Live also stars Amber Riley (Glee), Uzo Aduba (Orange Is the New Black), comedian David Alan Grier, Grammy winners Queen Latifah and Mary J. Blige and newcomer Shanice Williams as Dorothy.

Ready for more of today’s newsy nuggets? Well…

* Leo Fitzpatrick (The Wire) will recur in Gotham Season 2 as Joe Pike, the leader of a notorious gang of arsonists known as the Pike Brothers, Deadline reports.

* Reverend Al Sharpton and fashion icon André Leon Talley will guest-star as themselves on Empire‘s Season 2 premiere, per EW.com.

* The animated holiday classic Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas! — which has aired on ABC for the past eight years — will now air on NBC for the next two years.

* Jaime Ray Newman (Eureka, Red Widow) has joined ABC’s Wicked City (premiering Tuesday, Oct. 27) in the series regular role of Allison Roth, wife of Jeremy Sisto’s LAPD detective.

* Spike TV has given a 10-episode, straight-to-series order to Harvest, the cabler’s first scripted drama series in almost a decade. From producer Jerry Bruckheimer (CSI), the series centers on a cemetery caretaker who — when his estranged father shows up and threatens to expose a terrible secret — must partner with the man in a black-market tissue and body parts trade.

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8 Comments
  1. Lizo says:

    Awesome casting! I love Common – he’s really talented. Not seen Neyo act before, but I’m open to it

  2. Sara says:

    Empire really seems to be going down Glee’s path of trying to get as many big name celebrities as they can to guest star. Fox does not seem to have learned any lessons from Glee’s downfall. Too many big name guest spots can *seriously* hurt the storylines of the regular characters.

  3. LADY_in_MD says:

    I love empire but seriously this is getting out of control I agree with the other comments this is glee season 2 all over again

  4. O'yaya says:

    why does Common look like he’s been crying? who made Common cry?

    also I’m not as up in arms knowing these new empire guest stars will be playing themselves (which probably means minute long cameos and done) but I also would hate it if this season of empire is just a revolving door of “look who we got to show up!!”

  5. Sara says:

    Bub’s friend!!!

  6. Thea says:

    Yay Elijah!!! Can’t wait to hear him sing, though I do wish it were You Can’t Win instead of the song from the original. Ne-Yo’s SSOTM should be fun, he’s a great entertainer. This casting has been perfect top to bottom!!