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Thursday, Feb 22, 2007, 8:29 am

DreamWorks Apologizes for Mistaken Public Perception that “Dreamgirls” Was About Motown

By Brian Zick

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Steve Gorman for Reuters reports:
Bowing to pressure from Motown, makers of the Oscar-nominated film "Dreamgirls" said in ads on Wednesday that the musical was a work of fiction and apologized for any confusion with the legendary record label.

The full-page advertisements paid for by DreamWorks Pictures were published on Wednesday in Hollywood's two major "trade papers" -- Daily Variety and The Hollywood Reporter -- a day after voting on the Academy Awards ended.
The film, adapted from the hit Broadway musical of the same name, is loosely based on the story of one of Motown's greatest acts, Diana Ross and the Supremes. But the film has rankled a number of recording artists, writers and others connected with the label who felt Motown was falsely depicted in a negative light, Motown spokesman Paul Freundlich told Reuters.

Their objections led to "amicable discussions" between representatives for Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr., 77, and executives from DreamWorks and its parent studio, Paramount Pictures, a unit of Viacom Inc., Freundlich said.

Those talks, in turn, resulted in the ads taken out by DreamWorks. The timing of those ads ensured that any misgivings or other fallout from the studio's unusual disclaimer could not affect the outcome of the Oscar race.
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