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First Look: Taraji P. Henson & Newcomer Celina Smith in NBC’s Annie Live!

The sun’ll come out tomorrow as well as December 2 at 8 p.m. when NBC premieres Annie Live! Get a first look at cast members Celina Smith and Taraji P. Henson as they take on the roles of Annie and Miss Hannigan, respectively.

In addition to Smith and Henson, the star-studded cast will feature Harry Connick Jr. as Sir Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks, Nicole Scherzinger as Grace Farrell, Jane Krakowski as Lily St. Regis, and Tituss Burgess as Rooster.

The broadcast network’s live production of the beloved Tony Award-winning musical, which is inspired by the classic comic strip that first appeared in 1924, will air Thursday, December 2.

Annie Live! will be NBC’s first live musical broadcast since 2019’s Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert, starring Brandon Victor Dixon, John Legend, and Sara Bareilles. The network’s past productions include The Sound of Music, Peter Pan, The Wiz, and Hairspray.

The special broadcast will be executive produced by Robert Greenblatt, Neil Meron, and Alex Rudzinsky, with Lear deBessonet and Alex Rudzinski sharing the directing duties. Choreography will be led by Sergio Trujillo. Jason Sherwood will oversee production design. Stephen Oremus will orchestrate the music direction. Emilio Sosa will lead costume design. The live event is being produced by Chloe Productions.

Take a look at the photos below.


Celina Smith as Annie with Sandy the Dog. Photo by Paul Gilmore/NBC.
Celina Smith as Annie with Sandy the Dog. Photo by Paul Gilmore/NBC.
Taraji P. Henson as Miss Hannigan. Photo by Paul Gilmore/NBC.
Taraji P. Henson as Miss Hannigan. Photo by Paul Gilmore/NBC.