Original “Dreamgirl” Jennifer Holliday Speaks Out

December 26th, 2006 // 3 Comments

The woman who originally animated the role of Effie White on Broadway, Jennifer Holliday, says that she is essentially being pushed aside by the makers of the movie version of “Dreamgirls.” And she’s not sure exactly why. From The Boston Globe:

To critics and audiences, Holliday’s portrayal of Effie White, who is dumped just as the girl group she has fronted is poised for stardom, was the heart and soul of “Dreamgirls.” Her show-stopping rendition of the defiant anthem “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” brought audiences to their feet and became the hit musical’s hallmark. Holliday, who was 21 when the show opened, won a Tony for outstanding actress in a musical. She says her Tony Award-winning legacy, as well as the commemoration of the musical’s 25th anniversary, has been ignored by the filmmakers, presumably to keep the spotlight focused on the movie’s stars. Paramount and DreamWorks declined to address why the most recognizable link to “Dreamgirls” appeared to be passed over. Holliday was particularly heartbroken when friends told her that her version of “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going ” plays in one of the film’s trailers. In other words, her voice is being used to sell a production that shut her out. In a Hollywood-style twist of fate, Holliday, 46, has unwittingly become a reflection of her most famous role.

Girl, welcome to Destiny’s Child.

This ‘Dreamgirl’ says she’s haunted by a stolen legacy [The Boston Globe]

(Image source)

By Lisa Timmons
  1. Bubbie

    Would it have killed them to offer her a small part. WOULD IT?!?!?!!?
    Bastards.

  2. raven

    don’t worry jennifer holliday or jennifer hudson. beyonce’s trampled everyone on her way to achieve “oscar glory”. the good news- karma sucks and the movie does too.

  3. I have not seen the film yet, but I was lucky enough to be working in the entertainment press in Boston on the night that “Dreamgirls” opened for out-of-town tryouts. So I got to see/hear Jennifer Holliday sing that amazing song live for the first time! So many years later, I still remember the power of that performance. I am looking forward to hearing Jennifer Hudson in the film.

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