Sean Hayes is finally reuniting with Smash executive producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron on Hairspray Live!, the latest of the producers’ live NBC musical extravaganzas. Hayes will play friendly shop owner Mr. Pinky in the upcoming production, it was announced today at TCA, while Rosie O’Donnell has also been cast as the gym teacher. The two join the previously announced cast of Kristin Chenoweth as Velma von Tussle, Ariana Grande as Penny Pingleton, Jennifer Hudson as Motormouth Maybelle, and Derek Hough as Corny Collins. Harvey Fierstein, who wrote this adaptation, is returning to his Tony Award-winning role as Edna Turnblad and newcomer Maddie Baillio stars as the perky, dance-obsessed Tracy Turnblad.
Expect everyone to bring their A-game. When Hudson first heard Chenoweth sing at a recent table read, she recalled thinking, “”I’ve never heard nobody sing like that… I was like ‘what am I going to do, Jesus, when it’s my song?’”