Jennifer Hudson had to learn to be “a bitch” for her role in Dreamgirls

This week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly has a look at the upcoming film Dreamgirls, which stars American Idol 3 contestant Jennifer Hudson as Effie. She beat season three winner Fantasia Barrino (and 800 others) for the role.

However, she didn’t immediately fit into the role. The film’s director, Condon, “agonized” over Jennifer’s part in the film, according to the magazine. He says, “I was deeply aware that we could get everything else right in this movie. But unless Jennifer came through, the whole thing would collapse.”

Because “she was kind of still learning it all,” he says, he worked with her for a few days. Entertainment Weekly calls it “an emergency weeklong Diva 101 class, just director and actress.”

Jennifer says, “Everybody else had like a week or two off. I had 48 hours. … He ordered me to come into the studio just being a bitch. I consider myself very professional. But Effie is unprofessional. He told me, ‘Jennifer, you’re too sweet. Stop saying thank you. Stop coming in on time. Get an attitude. Be a diva, it’s okay. Be angry. Be rude. Be evil.”

Chasing Down the ‘Dreamgirls’ [Entertainment Weekly]