Hairspray Director Confirms Treatment Rumors

I’m still a bit shocked that Hairspray is popular enough to warrant a sequel. Actually, I guess that shouldn’t be a surprise - after all, the cult hit was hardly popular enough to warrant a musical adaptation, but that didn’t stop producers in the first place. Now a musical sequel seems exactly the right direction to take things.

We’ve reported a couple of times on sequel tidbits, from plans to move the characters into the ‘60s to the idea of having Zac Efron drop acid. Now MTV Movies Blog has gotten the chance to talk to director Adam Shankman, who confirms a lot of the rumors that have been flying.

First up - a tentative title for the sequel. Apparently the story treatment that’s going around is titled Hairspray 2: White Lipstick. The title is a reference to John Waters’ original title for Hairspray, but also ties into the story in a different way as well. More on that in a minute though.

So is it true that Zac Efron will do acid in the new movie? Yes, and no. ”In the treatment, [Efron’s drug use] is an accident,” Shankman says, adding that it’s most likely a story element that won’t make it to the actual script. ” “That’s the kind of stuff where you’re like: ‘Yeah, I don’t know if that’s going to work.’” Setting the movie in the ‘60s also introduces the Vietnam War, although don’t expect Efron’s character to see the draft calling his name.

What Shankman feels a bit more comfortable about is a storyline that would see the slimming down of John Travolta’s Edna, who gets hooked on diet pills as the story treatment currently runs. The director says the storyline doesn’t stem from the rumor that Travolta doesn’t want to wear the fat suit again, but just a new Waters-esque direction to take the character. Shankman also says that’s where the title, White Lipstick comes into play.

While Travolta is on board if the movie is funny enough, Shankman says Michelle Pfeiffer probably won’t return - not because of any differences, but instead just from a desire to change the story’s villain for a second chapter. Where that villain comes from isn’t known right now though. After all, they are still just in the treatment phase, which currently is just made up of, ”ideas that we’re just going to pick and choose from, and we’ll see what happens with it.”