Oscar nominee Taraji P. Henson (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) has signed on to play Miss Hannigan in NBC’s Annie Live! airing Thursday, December 2, 2021. “Carol Burnett, who brought Miss Hannigan to life in the classic 1982 movie, is someone I have studied and idolized as far back as I can remember,” explained Henson. “So when the opportunity came to me to join NBC and this incredible group of producers, I jumped! Carol, I hope to do you proud!”
“When we decided to bring back NBC’s holiday musical tradition, we were looking for something that was critically acclaimed and universally beloved – and while that’s definitely the case with Annie, it absolutely applies to Taraji as well,” stated Susan Rovner, Chairman, Entertainment Content, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. “Watching her take on this iconic role will be a thrill that has all the makings of must-watch television.”
The musical production’s titular role has yet to be cast. NBC is currently accepting auditions, with the casting taking place virtually. NBC’s looking for a young star of any ethnicity “to bring optimism, spunk, honesty and a wisdom beyond their years to the classic role.” More info’s available at https://castittalent.com/Annie_Live.
Lear deBessonet and Alex Rudzinski are attached to direct the live musical event based on the seven-time Tony Award-winning Broadway musical. Sergio Trujillo is on board as choreographer, Paul Tazewell is confirmed as the costume designer, and Jason Sherwood is the production designer. The music will be overseen by Stephen Oremus.
Robert Greenblatt, Neil Meron, and Alex Rudzinsky are executive producing. Annie Live! is produced by Chloe Productions.
Taraji P. Henson recently starred as Cookie Lyon on six seasons of the critically acclaimed series, Empire. Her performance in that dramatic series set in the world of hip-hop earned her Critics Choice, Screen Actors Guild, and Golden Globe awards.