New Line is in pre-production on a film version of Hairspray, based on the Broadway musical, which was in turn based on the 1988 John Waters film of the same name. As if the project itself didn't reek of serious tampering with the space-time continuum, the casting rumours swirling around it are … um … of further interest. Last month, several outlets reported that John Travolta is considering the role of Edna Turnblatt, played on stage by Harvey Fierstein, and created by Divine. Now, according to Variety, "funnyman" Billy Crystal is in talks to take on the role of Edna's husband Wilbur, played in the original film by Jerry Stiller, and Aretha Franklin is up for the part of record vendor Motormouth Maybelle. However, with Leslie Dixon recently taking over screenwriting duties for Thomas Meehan and Mark O'Donnell, the musical's original bookists, New Line insists that no final casting decisions will be made until there is a finished script.