By Joshua Rich
May 19, 2009 at 12:00 PM EDT

It’s official: Gossip Girl star Chace Crawford has been cast in the lead role in the anticipated remake of Footloose, Paramount announced today, confirming news that EW had previously reported. The role recently became available when Zac Efron bowed out. Footloose will be directed by High School Musical maestro Kenny Ortega. Paramount still hasn’t signed its female lead, though sources tell EW that several actresses — such as Hayden Panettiere and Julianne Hough — have been under consideration. (Reporting by Nicole Sperling)