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It's surprising how rapidly the remake of Sam O'Steen's Sparkle is coming together. While the project stuttered in development hell for an extended period of time, it's all been working out these past two weeks. First, Whitney Houston, Jordin Sparks and Mike Epps signed on to star in the film with Jumping The Broom helmer Salim Akil in the director's chair, and now, according to Black Film, Derek Luke has also joined the cast.

Confirmed in an interview with producer Debra Martin Chase, Luke will play Stix, the part played by Miami Vice's Philip Michael Thomas in the original. The story follows a group of three young singers, led by a girl named Sparkle (Jordin Sparks), as they move from the church choir to the big time. In addition to being a budding songwriter, Stix also serves as the group's manager and is Sparkle's love interest. Houston will play Sparkle's mother, who doesn't exactly approve of her daughter's singing career, while Epps plays Satin, a dangerous man who gets one of the singers hooked on drugs. The film is scheduled to go into production next month with TriStar Pictures attached as a distributor.

Derek Luke is having a pretty damn good year. In addition to this new starring role, he also played a member of the Howling Commandos in this summer's blockbuster Captain America: The First Avenger and had a regular role on the Jada Pinkett Smith series Hawthorne. Add the fact that he has a role in the Lorene Scafaria comedy Seeking a Friend for the End of the World and you can be assured that we'll be seeing plenty more of him in the future.