Hairspray Live Premiere Date

Hairspray Live Gets a Premiere Date: NBC Musical to Air in December

Corny Collins has just under 10 months to get his studio up to code.

NBC on Thursday announced that its next live musical — a production of Hairspray — will air Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 8/7c.

Additionally, Harvey Fierstein — who won a Tony Award in 2003 for playing the role of Edna Turnblad — has joined the team to write the teleplay, along with director Kenny Leon and choreographer Jerry Mitchell. Fierstein previously wrote the teleplay for NBC’s The Wiz Live.

They join the pre-established producing team of Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, as well as songwriters Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman.

For those unfamiliar with Hairspray, it tells the story of a plus-sized teen named Tracy Turnblad who challenges the status quo of 1960s Baltimore by sashaying her way onto a local TV dance show and standing up against racial inequality. Hairspray was conceived in 1988 as a John Waters film, then adapted into a Broadway musical in 2002. A film version of the musical, starring the likes of John Travolta (pictured) and Zac Efron, was released in 2007.

No casting decisions have been made — or at least announced — yet, so drop your best suggestions in a comment below.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Dude says:

    I feel like this musical would have done better on Fox.

  2. Jakay says:

    That picture of John Travolta is enough to give anybody nightmares. I’m sure Julianne Hough is already raising her hand to play Penny Pingleton AND Amber van Tussle because why not? RME Other than that, I don’t know. Too bad Harvey Fierstein isn’t playing Edna.

  3. BTM says:

    Jussie Smollett as Seaweed
    David Tennant or NPH as Corny Collins
    William Shatner as Edna
    Megan Hilty as Velma Von Tussle
    Audra MacDonald as Motormouth Maybelle

  4. TW says:

    Rebel Wilson as Tracy. Please!!!!

  5. Tina Fey says:

    If they wanna do a PC-thing with the show, they could cast Amber Riley for Tracy. :)

    • Btm says:

      Unfortunately, all of the characters are specifically one race or the other, unless they wanted to flip the races 100%. In that case, Samuel L. Jackson would be a perfect Corny, and Motormouth Maybelle would be played by Cher.


    Please John Waters / I hope you have some say in the casting.. The large gals need to be large, that’s what this movie & musical is all based on, the black people need that ” gritty” feeling from the movie. It made an amazing Broadway musical.. If they don’t cast this right , it will not have the impact it needs.. Sorry Rebel Wilson is too old to play the daughter or mother.. Get unknown people like John waters did


      This movie is about racial tensions in Baltimore. Switching the roles is a totally idiot idea & you don’t know what John Waters wrote for the movie. It’s the fact of growing up white & privileged in Baltimore gives it the edge when they meet up in the black record shop.. It would totally not work In a white record shop because white music was bland at that time.. This is a meeting of the races and done musically

  7. Ben says:

    Ummm…I hope you meant “standing up for racial equality” or “standing up against racial inequality.” Standing up for racial inequality is not what Hairspray is about.


      I loved the musical but it still can’t capture the racism of the movie.. The white mother walking in that ” scary” black area said it all.. The musical was given to Broadway as a gift but as with most John Water’s movies , you need to see the original as was intended.

  8. Ted Thompson says:

    Please have Harvey Fierstein play Edna!


      I agree Harvey. But he’s writing this show.. What a talent he is.. Harvey , you do this show I’ll come & cleAn your place for 1-3 months.. Or whatever you want.. I saw him twice on Broadway / he was MAGIC / TC

  9. Chrippy says:

    They should just get the cast of the film to do it. It would be interesting to see Amanda Bynes in the Penny Pingleton role now!

  10. ninergrl6 says:

    They need to cast people with Beoadway experience, not “names” for ratings purposes. Ryann Redmond for Tracy

  11. Francine says:

    Hi, in july 2013 in Montreal, there Was The musical Hairspray and the Tracy Turnblad Was amazing , her name Vanessa Duchel. She Was Amazing. She dance, act and sing ! Wow. She is so lovely.