Hairspray is based on the 1988 John Waters cult classic film and the critically acclaimed, Tony award-winning Broadway hit musical.
Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with big hair, and an even bigger heart, has only one passion - dancing. Her dream is to appear on The Corny Collins Show, Baltimores hippest dance party on TV. Tracy (Nikki Blonsky) seems a natural fit for the show except for one not-so-little problem - she doesnt fit in. Her plus-sized figure has always set her apart from the cool crowd which she is reminded of by her loving, but over-protective plus-sized mother, Edna (John Travolta). That doesnt stop Tracy, because if there is one thing that this girl knows, its that she was born to dance. As her father, Wilbur (Christopher Walken) tells her, Go for it! Youve got to think big to be big.
After wowing Corny Collins (James Marsden) at her high school dance, Tracy wins a spot on his show and becomes an instant on-air sensation, much to the chagrin of the shows reigning princess, Amber Von Tussle (Brittany Snow), and her scheming mother, Velma (Michelle Pfeiffer), who runs television station, WYZT. Even worse for Amber is the fact that its not just the audience who loves the new girl in town: Ambers sweetheart, Link Larkin (Zac Efron), seems to be smitten by Tracys charms as well. This dance party gets personal as a bitter feud erupts between the girls while they compete for the coveted Miss Teenage Hairspray crown.
At school, however, a short stint in detention and raised eyebrows caused by the budding relationship between her best friend, Penny Pingleton (Amanda Bynes) and Seaweed (Elijah Kelley), opens Tracys eyes to a bigger issue than the latest dance craze or the coolest hairdo - racial inequality. Throwing caution to the wind, she leads a march to Motormouth Maybelle (Queen Latifah) to fight for integration and winds up with an arrest warrant instead. Tracy is on the lam now and goes underground - literally - to Pennys basement.