Another Jennifer tidbit – Greg Braxton of The Los Angeles Times (reprinted in the Kansas City Star) interviews Ms. Holliday, who says:
Instead of being swept up in the hoopla over the new film adaptation of “Dreamgirls,” Holliday is being swept aside.
“Why is it necessary for them to wipe out my existence in order for them to have their success? It’s scary that they can be so cruel.” [said Holliday]
Well, I don’t think they thought about you at all, actually. Which may not be nice, but when studios produce a $75 million dollar movie, they usually aren’t that concerned with being nice. I don’t think the movie will do any damage to Holliday’s legacy, although admittedly future generations may see Hudson’s version as ‘definitive’, which it isn’t. Then again, this show business, and actors, especially stage actors, always get shafted (see also: Kathleen Chalfant not getting to play her role in Wit for just one glaring example).
As much as we do feel that Holliday is a little over the top in her criticism, this seemed unnecessary:
After weeks of suffering privately with the constant “Dreamgirls” onslaught — particularly the raves surrounding the other Jennifer — she said the final crushing blow came the night before her Ars Nova stint when she watched Hudson on “Entertainment Tonight” as Holliday’s version of “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” from the original cast recording played during the segment.
“When I saw that, I just gave up,” she said. “I thought, ‘This is a hopeless situation. I am being canceled out as an artist.’ ”
Memo to Dreamgirls the movie’s producers: play the new version of the song. If not that’s just mean.