John Waters to Pen Sequel to "Hairspray" Movie Musical

By Andrew Gans
July 23, 2008

The film version of the Broadway musical Hairspray, which itself was based on the original John Waters film, was such a hit that New Line Cinema has asked Waters to pen a sequel to the movie musical.

Variety reports that the project will reunite Waters with Adam Shankman, who directed and choreographed the film; producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan; and Hairspray songwriters Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. Shaiman and Wittman will write new songs for the sequel.

No casting has been announced, although Variety reports that New Line hopes to snag much of the original "Hairspray" cast. The "Hairspray" movie musical grossed more than $200 million worldwide, and New Line hopes the sequel will be ready for a mid-July 2010 release by Warner Bros.

The "Hairspray" film cast John Travolta as the frumpy Edna Turnblad with newcomer Nikki Blonsky as daughter Tracy, the energetic teenager who shakes up her Baltimore town. Also in the film were Christopher Walken, Zac Efron, Queen Latifah, Michelle Pfeiffer, James Marsden, Amanda Bynes, Elijah Kelley and Allison Janney.

Director Shankman told Daily Variety, "I never thought of musicals as franchises, but it certainly worked with 'High School Musical,' and the idea of working with that cast again, and creating new material and music, is a dream come true. John (Waters) has such an original and extraordinary voice; we all can't wait to see what he has come up with."

The sequel will likely pick up where the "Hairspray" film left off, in 1962 Baltimore.

*

"Hairspray" is based on the musical Hairspray, currently running at the Neil Simon Theatre, which is in turn based on the 1988 John Waters film of the same name.