Fox’s ‘Rocky Horror’ Taps Laverne Cox as Frank-N-Furter

laverne cox rocky horror
Courtesy of Matt Baron/REX Shutterstock

Fox’s “Rocky Horror Picture Show” has invited Laverne Cox to come up to its lab.

The “Orange is the New Black” actress has been cast as the sexually ambiguous flirtatious alien mad scientist Frank-N-Furter in the two-hour event special, said to be a re-imagination of the cult classic. The part is most famously played by a leather-corseted Tim Curry in the film version of the musical, which turned 40 this year.

Fox’s version was announced earlier this year, with “High School Musical’s” Kenny Ortega on board to direct, choreograph and exec produce. Gail Berman is producing the two-hour special through her Jackal Group with Fox 21 Television Studios. Lou Adler, who exec produced the movie, is also on board to exec produce. (Berman attempted to get a similar production on the air when she was president of Fox.)

The stage production “The Rocky Horror Show” first appeared in the ’70s in London’s West End, with Curry later starring in the Broadway version. A Broadway revival premiered in 2000 with a cast that included Tom Hewitt, Daphne Rubin-Vega and Alice Ripley. A 40th anniversary tour was staged this year at the London Playhouse and recently aired on BBC America.

“Rocky Horror Picture Show” will air in fall 2016 on Fox.

In January, Fox will stage a live adaptation of another beloved musical: “Grease.” Julianne Hough, Aaron Tveit and Vanessa Hudgens are slated to star in that production.

Cox is repped by Hartig Hilepo Agency, Ltd. and Peikoff/Mahan.

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  1. imymejubilee says:

    She’s not a Transvestite? Why pick her?

  2. Nick says:

    Even tho she looks like a man shes still going to ruin Rocky horror.

  3. Filthy Hobbitses!!! Always grabbing pretties that isn’t THEIRS!! This will flop in the biggest way! How dare they remake or even DREAM of IT to remake this film!!!

    HERESY!!!

    Sheer heresy!!!

    Celebrate the original, always. Remakes rock nothing but bad memories and diminishment of what of greatness was.

  4. Chris Graham says:

    Surely the whole point of Frank is that he’s patently obviously a man. DRESSED in women’s clothes, yeah, but not a woman, and not trying to be one.
    Why do American TV companies have to change things. What, are they going to set it in the twentyfirst century too? (Yes, I know the fifties/sixties setting of the film was compromised slightly by more modern motorcycles being used… but film makers often get those kinds of details wrong (The sixties Triumph in the WW2 film, ‘The Great Escape’ springs to mind.)

    • Hata H. Zappa says:

      What’s wrong now, o PC deputy? Can you not see by looking at Laverne’s face, the resemblance between her and Tim Curry? The impish look in her eyes matches Curry to a tee. Are you seriously suggesting that only a man can play this role? Never mind all the female roles played by men in Shakespeare’s plays. You have no qualified opinion here, so SHOO!

  5. Edward says:

    Tim Curry’s corset wasn’t leather. Sloppy research!

  6. You're_lucky_he's_lucky_I'm lucky_ we're_all_lucky! says:

    There is only one Tim Curry and no-one will ever top him (!!!), but as casting choices go, this could have been MUCH worse. I’m interested to see what she can do with this role.

  7. jazz says:

    with a heavy heart and an open mind, as well as years of midnight showings, all i can say is that i can’t wait to see how american television screws this up…

  8. Max says:

    All tea no shade but I can’t believe that the same guy that directed high school musical is directing rocky horror really???!!!! I’ll always be skeptical of rocky horror remakes so they better come correct cause at least in my opinion cause they are treading on sacred ground cause the original is so good and so loved by SO many people and nothing against Laverne Cox but you would think that they would have learned to not to mess with the character of frank furter after how they cast him on Glee other than that all I ask is that they stay true to the original no unnecessary cheesiness no new songs no modern takes like when they tried to remake Annie just keep as dirty as the original but hey let’s watch it first and then form opinions

  9. why not allow the release of #rockyhorrorliveDVD which has been shown on BBC America and could be used to raise funds for Amnesty international first before attempting a remake that doesn’t need to be done?

  10. Mondo says:

    I love Laverne, but this is a pretty big change to the character. Frank N Furter is a bisexual transvestite. It’s not really “ambiguous.” The transgender community already has to differentiate itself from transvestites… don’t you think this will make it even more confusing?

    I personally was really hoping for Billy Porter. What a missed opportunity to bring one of Broadway’s best to the public consciousness.

  11. Absolute disaster. Typical American Film “Magicians.” IDIOTS. There is NOTHING sexually ambiguous about Frank-N-Furter…ZERO. Watch “In Just 7 Days I Can Make You A Man” and imagine the disbelief, disappointment and SWITCH between the only polarities that matter in Television, On to OFF. I won’t even waste a rental. RIDICULOUS.

  12. UghNeverGoToTheMoviesAgain says:

    Hollywood keeps bringing the do-not-want and stupid.

  13. Robbie says:

    Well, they just pounded the final nail into this coffin

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