The Director's Chair: Adam Shankman's Hairspray Diary #19 has an exclusive look into the making of the movie musical HAIRSPRAY with this special Director's Diary written by Adam Shankman. Check back daily for new entries!


Marc and Scott wrote a song called "I Can Wait" for Tracy to sing in the Pingleton cellar.  It's a glorious power ballad, and I always thought that, even in the show, the big ballad (the eleven o'clock number) should be Tracy's.  I guess I understand why it goes to Maybelle in the show, but for me, I really wanted Tracy to have one.  There's a lot of back and forth about what the song should be…Tracy's crisis of faith, etc, and her sense of resolve, and they wrote a truly fabulous song in the vain of "Hopelessly Devoted to You," but with a lot more power and, of course, a lot more key changes.  You've gotta love that Marc Shaiman. 

The Pingleton cellar is a tiny, tiny square box and shooting an entire ballad took a lot out of me.  I had to squeeze something like 75 angles out of a tiny box, with bunk beds and pickle jars in it.  It was incredibly sweaty and hot on the sound stage while we were shooting, and because of the nature of the song, I kept falling asleep in my chair because it was so hot and it was such a slow ballad. Actually, I didn't fully fall asleep but my head would bobble and my attention would drift occasionally.  Nikki, of course, is brilliant and couldn't be sweeter. I'm just trying to give her enough movement to motivate the different camera angles. When it's fully orchestrated, its going to be unbelievable. 

*The song was eventually cut from the movie, but will be on the DVD as part of the Special Features.

Related Articles

From This Author Adam Shankman

Adam Shankman Adam Shankman is a master of comedy yet is still able to capture the sensitivity of each story, making him one of the most loved (read more...)

Before you go...