Trivia: Hairspray

  • Acting for Two: Divine played both Edna Turnblad and Arvin Hodgepile. Waters had to give Glen Milstead a male role because he was getting sick of doing drag for film roles. (Milstead insisted that he wasn't a drag queen in Hairspray because what drag queen would dare be so frumpy?
  • Actor Allusion: Face it, Ruth Brown was Motormouth Maybelle.
    • On the 2007 album, during "Nicest Kids in Town," Corny Collins describes them as "The Sugar and Spice-est"
    • In the 2007 film, Michelle Pfeiffer and Christopher Walken have a scene where she advances on him sexily, and he tries to stop her by using practical jokes as weapons. It's a deliberate homage to the end of Batman Returns, where they did the same thing as Catwoman and Max Shreck (although Walken used an actual gun in the latter).
  • All-Star Cast: Played with. The 2007 movie had several all star members (John Travolta, Christopher Walken, Queen Latifah, and Zac Efron to name a few), but these were mostly secondary roles, whereas the main role went to entirely new actress Nikki Blonsky.
  • Dyeing for Your Art: Amanda Bynes ate so many lollipops during filming there were some genuine concerns she might lose her teeth. Rumors place it at around 40 a day. John Travolta's fat suit couldn't have been all that pleasant either.
  • Fan Nickname: Amongst the cast, "You Can't Stop the Beat," due to the intense dancing and fast pace, garnered the nickname "You Can't Stop To Breathe."
  • Hey, It's That Guy!: In the Broadway version Will Schuester originally played Link.
    • In the 2007 movie, Troy Bolton is Link Larkin.
    • The original Amber is pop star, "Graduation (Friends Forever)" and current Nickelodeon VP Vitamin C.
  • Playing Against Type: An extremely epic one for John Waters. Ironically, this actually led to a lot more controversy due to parents getting such earlier Waters material as Pink Flamingos for their kids, which in at least one case resulted in a 911 call. Yes, Hairspray is for the whole family. Anything else by Waters? Not even close!
  • Recursive Adaptation: From movie to Broadway musical and back again.
  • What Could Have Been: James Marsden beat out his X-Men co-star Hugh Jackman and Joey McIntyre for the part of Corny Collins.
    • Queen Latifah won out over Aretha Franklin.
    • Christopher Walken was chosen over Billy Crystal.
    • Mamie Van Doren was originally picked for Velma in the original film.
    • John Waters wrote a sequel to the 2007 movie titled Hairspray 2: White Lipstick, detailing everyone's struggles to adjust to new music trends of the late 1960s. Plot points he shared included the African-American dancers planning an all-Black music program, Link becoming Fake Brit to attract fans of The Beatles, and Edna losing weight through weight loss pills. New numbers included Link having a Mushroom Samba and singing with his pimples, and Edna gorging back all the weight she lost after learning that Wilbur thinks she looked better when she looked fat.