Anticipation for the Christmas day release of the film adaptation of the broadway musical Dreamgirls is creating a strong Oscar buzz in Hollywood. I can't think of another movie that I've been this excited to see since "Diary of a Mad Black Woman"(I know...I know, not exactly Oscar caliber).
I couldn't help but notice the three names listed on the movie poster that's popping up all over town in this order, Jamie Foxx, Beyonce Knowles and Eddie Murphy. I looked at the poster and was a little perplexed to say the least. For those of you who are familiar with the show and the original Broadway history, it's obvious that Effie White originally played by the amazing Jennifer Holiday is the show's star. So why isn't the new Effie
Ms. Jennifer Hudson receiving top billing? I think the answer can be given in one word, BEYONCE.
Before you read any further I just want to let you know that this will not be another post crafted to berate Beyonce. I definitely have a love/hate relationship with her, but if her performance on Oprah is a preview of what's to come in the movie I think she will be considered for an Oscar
nomination in the best original song category, not best actress, after all she IS playing a SUPPORTING ROLE.
Early reviews of the film are singing Jennifer Hudson's praises. She's being described as a scene stealer, showstopper, tour de-force, bonafide star, and a top contender for an academy award. Not bad for someone who came in seventh on American Idol. So why is the obvious lead character and star of the film being pushed into the background?
I can understand if the producers were counting on Beyonce's star power to attract people to the film, but what I can't understand is why Jennifer's name wasn't included anywhere. Couldn't the poster have read "Dreamgirls" starring Jamie Foxx, Beyonce Knowles, Eddie Murphy and introducing Jennifer Hudson?
Once again we have art imitating life. Beyonce was born to play the role of Deena Jones(aka Diana Ross), she's lived it from the beginning of Destiny's child into her present solo career. Always in the middle of the singing trio, always singing lead(and the loudest !)and always grabbing media attention. Rumor has it that Ms. Knowles is extremely jealous of Jennifer's newfound celebrity and the legion of fans she's acquiring, one listen to Jennifer's rendition of "And I Am Telling You" and you can understand why.
Dreamgirls will be released nationwide on Christmas day.