Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Musical Hits the Big Screen

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Warner Bros. has released the first trailer for In the Heights. This is a big screen adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit musical of the same name. It’s also the latest from director John M. Chu, who is coming fresh off of Crazy Rich Asians, which went on to become a monster hit. Point being, this has a lot going for it and, based on this first trailer, they pulled out all the stops as it looks like a high-energy song and dance spectacle.

The trailer kicks off by setting up a bit of a storyteller narrative device with our lead explaining the glory days of the Washington Heights. We then cut to a musical number which, in very classic Broadway fashion, has people singing and dancing while normal, everyday things are happening. It doesn’t dig too much into the larger story, instead opting to give a general sense of what we’re going to see, as well as showing off a few of the song and dance numbers. Those, it’s worth mentioning, look rather grand and epic. The movie was also filmed largely on location in New York, which helps provide an authentic look and feel. Overall, this looks timely and like it’s going to be a real treat for anyone who enjoys musicals.

The cast includes Anthony Ramos (A Star is Born, Hamilton), Corey Hawkins (Straight Outta Compton, BlacKkKlansman), Melissa Barrera (Vida), Olga Merediz (Broadway’s In the Heights), Daphne Rubin-Vega (Rent), Gregory Diaz IV (Matilda the Musical), Stephanie Beatriz (Brooklyn Nine-Nine), Dascha Polanco (Orange is the New Black) and Jimmy Smits (Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith). Singer/songwriter Leslie Grace also stars. Quiara Alegría Hudes, who wrote the original musical, penned the screenplay. The music and lyrics were composed by Lin-Manuel Miranda.

In the Heights centers on the Washington Heights area of New York City, where the scent of a cafecito caliente hangs in the air just outside of the 181st Street subway stop. This is where a kaleidoscope of dreams rallies a vibrant and tight-knit community. At the intersection of all of this is the lovable bodega owner Usnavi (Anthony Ramos), who saves every penny from his job in the hopes of finding a better life. Warner Bros. is billing this as “the event of the summer, where the streets are made of music and little dreams become big.”

The play made its debut Off-Broadway in 2007 before officially opening at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in March 2008. It went on to become a massive success, running through January 9, 2011, concluding its run after a total of 1,184 performances. At the Tony Awards, the show won Best Musical, Best Original Score, Best Choreography and Best Orchestrations. Couple that with Miranda’s meteoric rise and it’s not hard to see why this has been turned into a movie. In the Heights is set to arrive in theaters on June 26, 2020, from Warner Bros. Be sure to check out the new trailer for yourself.

<strong><em>In the Heights</em></strong> movie poster
Ryan Scott at Movieweb



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