Kevin Hart is set to play Arnold Jackson in an ABC special which will recreate episodes of the iconic sitcom “Diff’rent Strokes.”
The network will air the 90-minute program, titled “Live in Front of a Studio Audience,” on Dec. 7. The news was announced in a press release issued on Thursday.
John Lithgow is set to star as Mr. Drummond, while Damon Wayans will play Willis Jackson and Ann Dowd will play Mrs. Garrett.
However, it’s Hart’s casting as Arnold that is attracting the most buzz on Twitter.
Several pundits wondered how Hart, 42, would be able to effectively embody the character of Arnold, who was originally played by Gary Coleman when he was a tween.
Another chimed in claiming that pint-sized Hart — who is 5-foot-4 and frequently pokes fun at his own height — was the same size as Coleman was on the show.
“Good choice on @KevinHart4real. Can use Gary’s wardrobe,” the Twitter user quipped.
Hart himself has not announced the news to his 36.8 million Twitter followers.
Meanwhile, the 90-minute “Live in Front of a Studio Audience” will also feature a recreation of a re-enactment episode from “The Facts of Life” — the “Diff’rent Strokes” spin-off that ran on ABC for 9 seasons.
The casting for that recreation has not yet been announced.
“Diff’rent Strokes” originally aired from 1978 to 1986, while “The Facts of Life” aired from 1979 from 1988.
The new ABC special will be executive produced by sitcom legend Norman Lear. Will Ferrell, Jimmy Kimmel, Justin Theroux and Kerry Washington have also been named as executive producers.
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