Tony-Winning Team Joins “Dreamgirls” Film

News   Tony-Winning Team Joins “Dreamgirls” Film
 
Eight-time Tony Award-winning lighting designer Jules Fisher and his partner Peggy Eisenhauer have joined the creative team for the upcoming “Dreamgirls” film.

A spokesperson for the lighting duo told Playbill.com that “at least 14 of the theatrical performance musical numbers” in the Bill Condon-directed film will feature lighting by Fisher and Eisenhauer. The lighting designers are currently represented on screens around the country in “The Producers”: their lighting can be seen in the production numbers “Springtime for Hitler,” “I Wanna Be a Producer” and “Prisoners of Love.”

Fisher and Eisenhauer are also represented on Broadway this season with Chita Rivera: The Dancer’s Life, which plays the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre. Their most recent Tony Award for Best Lighting Design was in 2004 for the Broadway mounting of Stephen Sondheim’s Assassins.

The "Dreamgirls" film, which began shooting this month, features Beyonce Knowles as Deena Jones, Anika Noni Rose as Lorrell Robinson, Jennifer Hudson as Effie White, Jamie Foxx as Curtis Taylor Jr., Eddie Murphy as James "Thunder" Early, Danny Glover as Marty Madison and Hinton Battle as Wayne.

"Dreamgirls" is being produced by DreamWorks and Paramount Pictures. Bill Condon, who penned the film's screenplay, directs. The motion picture employs the original score by Tom Eyen and Henry Krieger and is set to hit screens around the country in December 2006.

"Dreamgirls," according to a recent casting release, is described thusly: "Set in the early 1960's to the 1970's, this is the story of the amazing 'Dreams' — three African-American girl singers from the projects of Detroit who break their hearts on the path to stardom." Dreamgirls, which concerns the rise of a Supremes-like singing group amid a flurry of infighting, debuted at Broadway’s Imperial Theatre on Dec. 9, 1982, playing 1,521 performances before closing Aug. 11, 1985. The original cast featured Obba Babatundé, Cleavant Derricks, Loretta Devine, Ben Harney, Jennifer Holliday, Sheryl Lee Ralph and Deborah Burrell. The show lost the Tony for Best Musical to Maury Yeston’s Nine. A 1987 revival at the Ambassador Theatre starred Lillias White, Alisa Gyse, Kevyn Morrow, Weyman Thompson and Arnetia Walker.

Dreamgirls song titles include "One Night Only," "I Am Changing," "When I First Saw You," "Family" and Effie's first-act show stopper, "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going."

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