- Author Existence Failure: Tom Eyen died in 1991, forcing Henry Krieger to collaborate with three separate groups of lyricists on the film's movie bonus songs.
- Award Category Fraud: Jennifer Hudson won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for playing Effie White, even though this role is seen as a lead on stage and had earned Jennifer Holliday a Tony for Best Leading Actress in a Musical.
- Billing Displacement: Curtis makes Deena the star of the group and pushes Effie into the background because Deena is more marketable, even though Effie is more talented and the original lead singer of the group. Then for the film version, Beyonce Knowles (as Deena) got top billing while Jennifer Hudson (as Effie) was officially designated a "supporting actress", even though Effie is the main character of the story.
- Jennifer Hudson got a spectacular "And Introducing" credit and an Oscar, so perhaps it evens out.
- Dawson Casting: Despite the fact she played Lorrell, who was the youngest of the Dreams, Anika Noni Rose is the oldest of the three women by almost a decade.
- Dyeing for Your Art: Jennifer Hudson, while having a nice set of curves herself, had to bulk up to play Effie as depicted onstage.
- Life Imitates Art: See Billing Displacement in the main section.
- Remake Cameo: Loretta Devine who played Lorell onstage cameos as a club singer reminiscing about Jimmy before he died.
- Scully Box: Anika Noni Rose is significantly shorter than Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson, let alone the men, leading to the use of tricks to get her in the same shot as everyone else.