Variety reports that New Line and director Adam Shankman have finally filled all the key roles in the upcoming musical adaptation of Hairspray as Christopher Walken has signed on to star was Wilbur Turnblad.
Walken joins a large ensemble cast that includes John Travolta, Queen Latifah, Amanda Bynes, Michelle Pfeiffer, James Marsden, Zac Efron and newcomer Nikki Blonsky. The move to cast Walken means that the originally confirmed Jim Broadbent must be off the picture.
“Chris was the person Scott and I wanted in the first place, and this is a happy ending to this particular saga,” lyricist-composer Marc Shaiman told Variety. “It seems like this part allows him to coalesce all his skills into one role. I am constantly pessimistic, but I look at this cast and feel like I’ve fallen into an old MGM musical.”
The film is originally based on Waters’ 1988 comedy about star-struck teenagers on a local Baltimore dance show. The new version of the film will be based on New Line’s hit Broadway adaptation of the film which debuted in 2002, and went on to win eight Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Score, Best Book and Best Director.
Filming begins in Toronto next month and the pic has moved from its previously planned December 21, 2007 release to Summer 2007.