'Annie Live!' Cast: All the Stars Appearing in the NBC Musical Special

The latest live stage event from NBC airs on Thursday night, with plenty of familiar faces taking roles in the classic musical Annie.

The special event Annie Live! features newcomers, an Oscar-nominated actress, comedians and a famous girl band member. Previous iterations of the NBC Live! shows have included Peter Pan Live!, The Sound of Music Live!, The Wiz Live! and Hairspray Live!.

This will be the fourth screen adaptation of the Annie story after the 1982 movie, a 1999 TV movie, the 2014 movie, and now, this live stage show shown exclusively on NBC.

While Annie Live! is sure to be entertaining enough, NBC have introduced a play and watch option with an Annie bingo card available online.

Who stars in Annie Live!?

The titular role will be played by newcomer Celina Smith. NBC found their leading lady after conducting a nationwide audition for the role, which they had also done to find their stars for The Wiz Live! and Hairspray Live!

Smith is from Atlanta and has previously performed on the stage as Young Nala in the national touring company's The Lion King. Smith also starred in Nickelodeon show Young Dylan. The young singer has shared covers of Meghan Trainor and Billie Eilish songs on her YouTube channel.

Annie Live! on NBC Celina Smith
Celina Smith will play the titular orphan Annie in "Annie Live!" on NBC. Paul Gilmore/NBCUniversal

Harry Connick Jr. wears the bald cap in Annie Live! to play the billionaire Sir Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks. The actor and musician has performed in a number of Broadway musicals over the years including The Pajama Game and On a Clear Day You Can See Forever.

The role of the wicked Miss Hannigan is taken by Empire star Taraji P. Henson. The Oscar-nominated actress has shown her singing abilities on camera over the years by performing songs on Hustle and Flow, and on SNL.

Annie Live! on NBC Taraji P. Henson
Taraji P. Henson as Miss Hannigan in "Annie Live!" on NBC. Paul Gilmore/NBCUniversal

Pussycat Dolls frontwoman Nicole Scherzinger plays the sweeter character Grace Farrell. Scherzinger's singing abilities can't be questions after a successful music career in the group and also as a solo artist, while she's made several acting appearances in the likes of Men in Black 3, Moana and How I Met Your Mother.

Harry Connick Jr and Nicole Scherzinger Annie
Harry Connick Jr. as Daddy Warbucks and Nicole Scherzinger as Grace Farrell as they appear in "Annie Live!" on NBC. Paul Gilmore/NBCUniversal

The role of Rooster Hannigan, Miss Hannigan's brother, will be played by Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt favorite Tituss Burgess. He's a Broadway veteran after having starred in Jersey Boys, The Wiz, The Little Mermaid, Guys and Dolls and Into the Woods, all before he became a recognizable face on television.

Broadway actress Megan Hilty stepped in at the last minute to play the role of Lily St. Regis after Jane Krakowski had to drop out in November after she caught COVID-19. Hilty is a more-than-qualified stand in as she's starred in plenty of productions including Wicked, 9 to 5: The Musical, Annie Get Your Gun and Noises Off.

Annie Live! on NBC Titus Burgess
Tituss Burgess as Rooster Hannigan in "Annie Live!" on NBC. Paul Gilmore/NBCUniversal

The team behind Annie Live! had honored the original Broadway production of Annie by casting Andrea McArdle, the first person to play the red-haired orphan, as Eleanor Roosevelt. Unfortunately, in November McArdle announced she would have to withdraw from the production because her father is in hospital.

Other actors scheduled to appear in the cast include Jeff Kready, Alan Toy, McKenzie Kurtz and Arwen Monzon-Sanders in supporting roles.

Annie Live! Bingo

The NBC website is offering up viewers the chance to "Sing, laugh and bingo while watching Annie Live!" with an automatically generated bingo card.

Each section of the bingo card features a different quote, moment or item that will feature in the musical special. The sections include "It's The Hard-Knock Life," "Rooster First Appears" and "Sandy Barks."

Annie Live! airs on Thursday, December 2 at 8/7c on NBC. It will become available to watch on the streaming service Peacock the next day.

Annie Live! on NBC cast
The cast of "Annie Live!" as they will appear on NBC. Paul Gilmore/NBCUniversal