Cee Lo Green and Derek Luke Join 'Sparkle' Film

It's been confirmed that Whitney Houston will star opposite IN THE HEIGHTS alum Jordin Sparks in an upcoming remake of 1976's 'Sparkle,' and today Showbiz411's Roger Friedman reports that singer Cee Lo Green and actor Derek Luke have joined the cast.

Friedman states that "In this version, Whitney's character will not be a maid but a former R&B star who's gone back to the church. I am told that Whitney will sing two gospel songs in the film."

Houston will play Sparks's mother in the film, which will feature the original score from composer Curtis Mayfield. Salim Akil and Mara Brock Akil will serve as writer and director. Jordin Sparks won FOX's American Idol at just 17 years old, and followed up with over 9 million singles sold to date. In 2010 she made her Broadway debut as Nina in IN THE HEIGHTS. "Sparkle" will mark her silver screen debut.

Houston's career has consisted of record-setting achievements in music: the only artist to chart seven consecutive #1 Billboard Hot 100 hits ("Saving All My Love For You," "How Will I Know," "Greatest Love Of All," "I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)," "Didn't We Almost Have It All," "So Emotional," and "Where Do Broken Hearts Go"); the first female artist to enter the Billboard 200 album chart at #1 (her second album, Whitney, 1987); and the only artist with seven consecutive multi-platinum albums (Whitney Houston, Whitney, I'm Your Baby Tonight, The Bodyguard, Waiting To Exhale, and The Preacher's Wife soundtracks, and My Love Is Your Love).

Green - who is better known to his fans as simply Cee Lo - won a Grammy this year for Best Urban/Alternative Performance for "Forget You" (aka "F--k You"). Cee Lo, a rap singer, songwriter and record producer, first became recognized as a member of the hip-hop group Goodie Mob (which released the album "World Party"), and later launched a critically hailed solo career. He also formed the group Gnarls Barkley with deejay-producer Danger Mouse. Among Cee Lo's best-known hits are the singles "Closet Freak," "I'll Be Around," "Crazy (by Gnarls Barkley) and "Forget You."

Cee Lo's albums include "Cee Lo Green and His Perfect Imperfections," "Cee Lo Green - Is the Soul Machine," "Closet Freak: The Best of Cee Lo Green the Soul Machine," "Forget You" and his most recent, "The Lady Killer." He also collaborated with Danger Mouse for the album "St. Elsewhere" (his greatest-selling album). Cee Lo currently is working with Jazze Pha on the album "Happy Hour."

"Sparkle" aims for a 2012 or 2013 release. Read the Showbiz411 article here.



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