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Debra Messing Signs On for Dirty Dancing Remake

The stage and TV veteran will join Abigail Breslin for a fresh look at the film favorite.

The Dirty Dancing remake lands Debra Messing to play mom to Abigail Breslin's Frances "Baby" Houseman.
(© David Gordon)

Debra Messing will step into the shoes of A Chorus Line Tony winner Kelly Bishop in the upcoming ABC television remake of Dirty Dancing. Messing (Outside Mullingar, Smash) will play Marjorie Houseman, mother to Frances "Baby" Houseman, set to be played by Abigail Breslin (Scream Queens, Little Miss Sunshine). Bishop originated the role in the 1987 film.

The original film famously starred Jennifer Grey as Baby opposite Patrick Swayze as Johnny Castle. The story follows a teenage girl who falls in love with a working-class dance instructor while vacationing with her family in the Catskill Mountains.

Allison Shearmur (The Hunger Games) and Eleanor Bergstein — who wrote the original screenplay — will serve as executive producers. Jessica Sharzer (The L Word) will write the adaptation, with direction by Wayne Blair (The Sapphires), music by Adam Anders and Peer Astrom (Glee), and choreography by Hamilton choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler.

Unlike NBC's musical presentations of The Sound of Music, Peter Pan, and most recently The Wiz, Dirty Dancing will not be a live broadcast. The production more closely mirrors Fox's upcoming remake of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, which is set to air in the fall.

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