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Travolta and
Latifah cast in Hairspray's net

Travolta and
Latifah cast in Hairspray's net

Search still on for actress to play Tracy Turnblad.

John Travolta will cross-dress to play Edna Turnblad in the big-screen adaptation of Hairspray, while Queen Latifah has been signed to play Motormouth Maybelle. Variety reports that both stars have signed pay-or-play contracts to star in the musical, to be directed by gay filmmaker Adam Shankman (The Pacifier, Bringing Down the House) and produced by the out production team of Craig Zadan and Neil Meron (Chicago). The film is set to start shooting in September for a summer 2007 release, but the key lead role of Tracy Turnblad has yet to be cast. Hairspray began life as a 1988 John Waters comedy before premiering on Broadway as a musical in 2002. The stage production has grossed more than $156 million and swept the Tonys, including Best Actor in a Musical for Harvey Fierstein, who originated the role of Edna. Tony-winning songwriters Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman will create new songs for the movie and expand singing and dancing opportunities for Travolta. (

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