Lots of new faces join the “Smash” cast for its second season, including Broadway veteran Sheryl Lee Ralph. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Ralph will play Jennifer Hudson’s mother on the show. Along with this new connection, Hudson and Ralph have a Dreamgirls connection, as Ralph played Dreamgirls’ Deena Jones on Broadway in 1981 and Hudson played Effie White in the film version in 2006.

In addition to Dreamgirls, Ralph’s stage credits also include 2002’s “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and features “Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit.” On the small screen, her résumé includes “Hunter,” “Designing Women” and “Moesha.”

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Ralph will guest star as Cynthia, the mother to Hudson’s Veronica Moore. Veronica is described as a Tony-winning Broadway star who impacts the lives of Karen (Katharine McPhee) and Ivy (Megan Hilty). The former Dreamgirls Oscar winner will appear in multiple episodes of Smash’s second season, which is set to return midseason.

This isn’t the first Broadway legend who has been featured on “Smash.” Broadway legend Bernadette Peters played Ivy’s mother on the first season of “Smash,” appearing in a pair of episodes to support her daughter as she struggled with the demands of Bombshell, the play at the center of Season 1.

Do you think Ralph and the other new additions to the cast will reinvigorate “Smash”?

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By Monique Jones

Monique Jones blogs about race and culture in entertainment, particularly movies and television. You can read her articles at Racialicious, and her new site, COLOR . You can also listen to her new podcast, What would Monique Say.

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