Naturally, we had to take the story to the man himself, “Hairspray” director Adam Shankman – who not only confirmed it all, but also told us about a title possibility and the big-name star who won’t be returning when the sequel hits theaters in July 2010.
“It’s crazy,” Shankman laughed. “[The treatment] is amazing, but it’s crazy. There are things in there that I was like ‘Can we do that?’ It’s real John Waters-y stuff, and it was more like a sequel to his movie than to our movie. Which I love, because then that becomes re-interpreted.”
Shankman admitted that while Waters does indeed want squeaky-clean Zac Efron to take acid (“or something like that”), the director will likely yank out that controversial story detail before they go to script. “I think that’s probably part of the treatment that won’t get used. And in the treatment, [Efron’s drug use] is an accident,” he said, explaining that he also won’t be asking the “High School Musical” star to have trippy conversations with the acne on his forehead. “That’s the kind of stuff where you’re like: ‘Yeah, I don’t know if that’s going to work.’”
The director (whose Adam Sandler comedy “Bedtime Stories” hits theaters Christmas Day) did say, however, that he’ll most likely keep John Travolta’s weight-loss storyline. “It has Edna getting hooked on diet pills,” he said of the parts he liked about Waters’ treatment, including a possible title. “Let’s put it this way: It’s called ‘Hairspray 2: White Lipstick.’ [That’s a] butch title. That’s what the treatment was called!”
As die-hard Waters fans know, his original title for 1998’s “Hairspray” was “White Lipstick,” named after the Sixties fashion fad.
Rumors have been swirling for months that John Travolta doesn’t want to don the fat suit again, but Shankman was quick to shoot them down: “That’s not what he said. He’s like ‘No, just keep going. And if it’s funny, I’ll do it.’”
The director did admit, however, that one person who most likely won’t return is the evil Velma Von Tussle. “Yeah, probably [no Michelle Pfeiffer],” he revealed. “Not because we didn’t love her, but because we just thought different adversaries [would be necessary].”
“There’ll be a change in villains,” he explained, likely also subtracting Brittany Snow, who played Pfeiffer’s daughter in the hit 2007 flick. “[Waters’ treatment] is ideas that we’re just going to pick and choose from, and we’ll see what happens with it.”
Oh, and here’s one last interesting tidbit: Although it is known that the film will use the Vietnam War as a backdrop, it’s not Zac Efron’s Link Larkin who’ll be drafted.
“No, it wasn’t Zac,” Shankman said, before catching himself. “Wow, you’re getting a lot out of me for something I said I wouldn’t talk about.”
Are you as sad as I am that Zac won’t be taking a far-out trip in “Hairspray 2”? Or is Shankman making the right call?