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Jennifer Hudson, Harvey Fierstein join 'Hairspray Live!' cast

Jennifer Hudson, Harvey Fierstein join 'Hairspray Live!' cast
Jennifer Hudson at the Michael Kors 2016 show during Fashion Week in New York onFeb. 17, 2016. (Charles Sykes / Invision / AP)

Jennifer Hudson and Harvey Fierstein have joined the cast of "Hairspray Live!," the fifth installment in NBC's live-musical effort.

Hudson, who won an Oscar for "Dreamgirls" when it left Broadway for the movies, will play Motormouth Maybelle. Fierstein will reprise his role as Edna Turnblad, which earned him a Tony Award for lead actor in a musical when when "Hairspray" went from movie to Broadway musical in 2002.

"Harvey Fierstein created the role of Edna Turnblad on Broadway in an indelible Tony-winning performance that demanded to be memorialized on film, and we’re happy he wanted to step into her shoes one last, unforgettable time," NBC Entertainment Chairman Robert Greenblatt said in a release Monday. "We’re also so grateful that the incomparable Jennifer Hudson will play Motormouth Maybelle and we know her rendition of 'I Know Where I've Been' will literally stop the show."

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Fierstein, who played Edna for two years on Broadway, also will provide a new teleplay for the story of Tracy Turnblad, a teen-turned-instant-celebrity in 1962 Baltimore, the network said.

"Yesss!!!!! 'Bring on that pecan pie! Pour some sugar on it, sugar. Don't be shy!,'" Fierstein tweeted, quoting the show's song "Big, Blonde and Beautiful."

Maybelle was originated by Ruth Brown in the 1988 film version of "Hairspray" and played by Queen Latifah in the 1997 movie. The film version of Edna was originated by Divine in 1988 and played by John Travolta in 1997. TV director Alex Rudzinski, who helmed "Dancing With the Stars" from 2004 through 2015 and "Grease Live!" in January, joins stage director Kenny Leon, who handled "The Wiz Live!"

NBC previously tackled "Live!" versions of "The Sound of Music" and "Peter Pan," and has "A Few Good Men Live!" on tap for 2017.

"Hairspray Live!," which will be performed in Los Angeles,  will air at 8 p.m. Dec. 7.

https://twitter.com/nbc/status/724645118133723136

Follow Christie D'Zurilla on Twitter @theCDZ.

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