The paper said talks with Knowles began after she met with director Bill Condon and producer Laurence Mark last week to test for the role. "Dreamgirls" is loosely based on the rise to stardom of Diana Ross and the Supremes.
Knowles made her feature debut as Foxxy Cleopatra in "Austin Powers in Goldmember," and subsequently appeared in "The Fighting Temptations" with Cuba Gooding Jr. She is due on U.S. movie screens this summer in "The Pink Panther," with Steve Martin and Kevin Kline.
Condon wrote and directed "Kinsey" and "Gods and Monsters." He won the Oscar for "Gods and Monsters," and was nominated for his screenplay for the Oscar-winning "Chicago."
Variety said Condon's screenplay for "Dreamgirls" retains Tom Eyen's Tony-winning book and the Tony-nominated score by Eyen and Henry Krieger.