David Hasselhoff has been signed to perform as Roger DeBris, the effeminate director of Springtime for Hitler, in the Las Vegas production of The Producers opening in January. ((Mary Altaffer/Associated Press))

Former Baywatch star David Hasselhoff will take the role of a flamboyant director in the Las Vegas production of the hit musical The Producers.

Hasselhoff, who is six foot four, will wear a dress to play the gay director Roger DeBris, whose shows have an unbroken record as flops.

"He is perfect for Roger DeBris because he has the best legs in Hollywood," Mel Brooks said in announcing casting for the Las Vegas production on Thursday.

The Producers, based on the Brooks movie, has been a hit in both New York and London and won 12 Tony awards.

It is the story of a veteran producer and a mousy accountant who hatch a scam to raisemore money than needed for a show guaranteed to flop, so they can pocket the excess cash.

Hasselhoff, 54,previous appeared on stage in a Broadway production of Jekyll & Hyde andas Billy Flynn in a West End production of Chicago.

The actor, whose other television credits include Knight Rider, recently pulled out of a Christmas pantomime role in London to star as a judge on Simon Cowell's reality TV series America's Got Talent.

He also has been pursuing a career as a recording star in Europe.

Hasselhoff, who split from his wife of 16 yearsthis year, said he took the role because he needed some fun.

"God came to me and said you have had enough stuff in your life over the last year. Here's fun," he said in an interview with Reuters.

"I am honoured to be a part of anything Mel Brooks is involved with. He is my favourite man of comedy," he said.

TheProducers opens at the Paris Las Vegas hotel on Jan. 31.

Brad Oscar, who played producer and lothario Max Bialystock inNew York and London, will reprise the role in Las Vegas.

With files from the Associated Press