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Creative Team Assembled for Starry Dreamgirls Film

The creative team for the upcoming film version of Dreamgirls has been assembled.

Joining previously-announced Oscar-winning director Bill Condon and the Tony Award-winning lighting design team of Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer (who will light at least 14 production numbers) will be Oscar-winning production designer John Myhre, Oscar-nominated costume designer Sharen Davis, editor Virginia Katz, director of photography Tobias Schliessler, music supervisors Randy Spendlove and Matt Sullivan, and casting director Debra Zane.  In addition, The Underdogs (Harvey Mason, Jr. and Damon Thomas) will serve as music arrangers and producers.

Set for a nationwide release on December 22nd, the Dreamgirls film will star "American Idol"'s Jennifer Hudson as Effie Melody White, the phenomenally talented vocalist who is considered unmarketable as the lead singer of the Supremes-like Motown group The Dreams, and who is dropped in favor of the glamorous Deena Jones (played by pop superstar Beyonce Knowles). Sharon Leal (Rent, "Guiding Light," "Boston Public") will play Michelle, who replaces Effie in the Dreams. The cast also includes Eddie Murphy as soul superstar James "Thunder" Early, Danny Glover as Early's manager Marty Madison, Academy-Award winner Jamie Foxx as Dreams manager Curtis Taylor Jr., three-time Tony Award-winner Hinton Battle as Wayne, and Tony Award-winner Anika Noni Rose as Lorrell Robinson, the vivacious third member of the Dreams.

Dreamgirls, a co-production between DreamWorks and Paramount Pictures that will be released domestically by the former and internationally by the latter, will be directed by Condon, the Academy Award-winner who received an Oscar nomination for his screenplay for the film version of Chicago. He will also adapt the screenplay from Tom Eyen's book (Eyen also wrote the lyrics to Henry Kreiger's music).
 

Dreamgirls opened at the Imperial Theatre on December 20th, 1981. A smash hit, it ran for 1521 performances and won 8 of it 15 Tony nominations. The show featured a score by Henry Krieger and Tow Ewen, a book by Ewen, scenic design by Robin Wagner, costume design by Theoni V. Aldredge and lighting design by Tharon Musser. Dazzlingly staged by Michael Bennett, the show nonetheless lost the Best Musical Tony to Nine. Jennifer Holliday, Sheryl Lee Ralph and Loretta Devine were the three Dreams, and Cleavant Derricks, Ben Harney and Obba Babatunde were also featured. Dreamgirls was revived in 1987 with Lillias White, Alisa Gyse and Arnetia Walker. Heather Headley, Audra McDonald and White headlined the 2001 Actors' Fund benefit concert.

For a sneak peek at the Dreamgirls film, visit
www.dreamworks.com/dreamgirls.


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