Short and Hough join a cast that already includes Harvey Fierstein and Jennifer Hudson. Short will play Wilbur, loving husband to Fierstein’s Edna Turnblad. Hough will play Corny Collins, host of the local TV program “The Corny Collins Show.
“We are very happy to have the inimitable Martin Short to play Edna’s loving husband, Wilbur,” said Robert Greenblatt, chairman, NBC Entertainment. “We welcome Marty to the network in May in his new variety show with Maya Rudolph and we think he will be the perfect long-term companion to Harvey’s Edna. And hands-down the best dancer on television and one of the best in the entertainment business, Derek Hough, will be perfect in the role of Corny Collins, the cocky song-and-dance-man who hosts the TV show every teenager in Baltimore wants to be on.”
NBC’s “Hairspray Live!” is adapted from the Tony award-winning Broadway musical, which itself was adapted from the 1988 feature film by John Waters. “Hairspray” takes place in 1962 Baltimore and tells the story of teenager Tracy Turnblad, whose dream is to appear on “The Corny Collins Show.”
Short, a two-time Primetime Emmy award winner, will star in the upcoming Lorne-Michaels-produced NBC variety series “Maya and Marty in Manhattan” alongside fellow “Saturday Night Live” alum Maya Rudolph. Hough is a cast member on ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.”
Produced by Universal Television, “Hairspray Live!” will air Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. The show will be directed by Alex Rudzinski, who alse helmed Fox’s “Grease Live.” Craig Zadan and Neil Meron will serve as executive producers.