Dreamgirls Getting Closer to Broadway Revival?

By: Dec. 04, 2006
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Following reports in Variety in December about increasing interest in a Broadway revival of Dreamgirls, Michael Riedel reports in the NY Post today that things are moving along, with meetings planned for next month to discuss bringing the show back. Henry Krieger, the show's composer talks to the Post, and says that "We think it's time. All is good." Insiders are predicting that the film's Effie, Jennifer Hudson, will be offered first crack at the title role on Broadway, but naturally it's too early to guess how that will pan out. 

Per Variety, John Breglio - an entertainment lawyer and producer who handles the estate of the late Michael Bennett (who originally staged Dreamgirls) - said that although he's not rushing any plans, he has "little doubt that we'll have some kind of new production," he says.  Breglio, Krieger and Eyen will come to a decision about a Broadway revival after the release of the film.  He also states that interest in a Dreamgirls revival is present in the UK and abroad.

"It turned into this huge thing.  Which is fabulous, because it puts the property back in front of people in a grassroots way,"  said Terry Press, the worldwide marketing executive of DreamWorks, which produces Dreamgirls.  Since the film began to gather buzz, there has been an increase in the number of regional and amateur Dreamgirls productions.

"If a new revival emerges in the wake of the movie, several questions remain to be answered, such as whether it would be a remount of Bennett's production (a la Breglio's faithful revival of A Chorus Line) and whether the new songs written for the film would be included as they have been in many post-movie stagings of The Sound of Music, for instance," states the article.  Also unknown is the potential involvement of DreamWorks in bringing the show back to Broadway.

Dreamgirls is directed by Bill Condon, who has also adapted Eyen's book.

Set in the turbulent early 1960s to mid-70s, Dreamgirls "follows the rise of a trio of women -- Effie (Jennifer Hudson), Deena (Beyonce Knowles) and Lorrell (Anika Noni Rose) -- who have formed a promising girl group called The Dreamettes.  At a talent competition, they are discovered by an ambitious manager named Curtis Taylor, Jr. (Jamie Foxx), who offers them the opportunity of a lifetime: to become the back-up singers for headliner James 'Thunder' Early (Eddie Murphy).  Curtis gradually takes control of the girls' look and sound, eventually giving them their own shot in the spotlight as The Dreams.  That spotlight, however, begins to narrow in on Deena, finally pushing the less attractive Effie out altogether.  Though the Dreams become a crossover phenomenon, they soon realize that the cost of fame and fortune may be higher than they ever imagined," state press materials.