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A Hip Hopera to be the real deal? Initially, Jamie Foxx was really not feeling being in this movie. He was approached several times and turned it down several times but when he found out that Beyonce and Eddie Murphy had been cast in the film he agreed to take the role of Curtis.
Money, Money, Money The people behind the scenes went all the way out to make sure that this movie looked and felt good. To date, Dreamgirls is the most expensive film featuring an African American cast.
Dreamgirls (film) - Wikipedia
But it more than paid off. Michael Bennett, who was the stage director for the musical passed away inleaving the rights to the production to co-financier David Geffen. The show was finally greenlit sometime around Bill Condon, who had written the screenplay for Chicago, met producer Laurence Mark at a Hollywood party in and the two chatted about the project.
Eventually they met with David Geffen who convinced Bill Condon to write and direct the version we all know today. Not only did she have to gain 20 pounds for the role, she also had to get lip injections for the dent in her top lip. Yeah, I know, sounds weird. Anika later said that the heels were not pleasant.
And she did so with a diet of lemon, water, maple syrup and cayenne pepper. It was so important that director Bill Condon purposely waited until the end of filming to shoot it.
I grew up with the Shirelles. Dreamgirls isn't about any one group. It's a cavalcade of black Motown singers: All the characters are larger than life. Both the Supremes and the Dreams started off with "ettes" in their group's name.
Bet You Didn’t Know: Secrets Behind The Making Of “Dreamgirls”
The Supremes were originally the Primettes; the Dreams start off as the Dreamettes. Both the Supremes and the Dreams did background vocals for established recording artists before becoming famous.
Diana Ross was chosen as the lead singer of the Supremes because of her distinctive, softer, commercial voice, just as Deena Jones is chosen as the lead singer of the Dreams.
Deena Jones is coached to be the spokesperson for the group during press conferences, just as Diana Ross was for the Supremes.
Bet You Didn’t Know: Secrets Behind The Making Of “Dreamgirls” | MadameNoire
The press was instructed to refer to Diana Ross as "Miss Ross. Effie White reacts in the same manner when Deena Jones is pushed forward as the star of the Dreams.
Florence Ballard missed performances, recording sessions, allegedly "faked" illnesses, and gained weight, all of which resulted in her being fired from the group in Las Vegas in The character of Effie White goes through the same experience. Cindy Birdsong went on to perform with the Supremes the same night Florence Ballard was fired, just as Michelle Morris goes on to perform with the Dreams the same night Effie White is fired.
After Diana Ross left the Supremes in to pursue other projects such as film work, in she starred in her first motion picture, the Motown-produced Lady Sings the Blues. The character of Deena Jones leaves the Dreams in to pursue a career as an actress. Dreamgirls film David Geffenfounder of Geffen Records and one of the play's financiers, leased the Dreamgirls film rights to Warner Bros. Although the film was announced several times, with singers such as Whitney Houston as DeenaLauryn Hill another Deena candidateand Kelly Price as Effie tapped to star, the studio eventually abandoned the project.
Dreamgirls was first exhibited in special ten-day road show engagements beginning December 15, Subsequently, the film went into national release on December 25, While much of the material remains the same as that of the stage musical, some of the stage musical's songs most notably "Ain't No Party" were removed, and four new songs were added.
A number of changes were made to the story as well, including the additions of more overt references to The Supremes and Motown, the death of Jimmy who is found dead on the road after a heroin overdoseand the relocation of the story's main setting from Chicago to Detroit. The film won two Academy Awards: