Lin-Manuel Miranda, Quiara Alegría Hudes and Jon M. Chu had a chat with The New York Times about In The Heights.
Check the photos in our Gallery and the article below.
Lin-Manuel Miranda still believes it was a miracle that In the Heights, the musical homage to Latino culture through the lens of the Washington Heights neighborhood, made it to Broadway. Back in 2008, before striving for inclusion became the entertainment industry standard, he and the playwright Quiara Alegría Hudes were unknowns peddling a joyful narrative about unseen people.
Their exuberant show inspired by their families and neighbors finally reaches the big screen (and HBO Max) this week after stumbling through multiple studios. Warner Bros. and the director Jon M. Chu (Crazy Rich Asians) were ultimately entrusted with the project.
In retrospect, Miranda said, it was naïve to think that getting the show from the stage to the multiplex would be easy. It took more than a decade.
Some of the hurdles were about Hollywood’s unwillingness to take chances on new talent and invest in that, Miranda said. When you watch this movie that Jon has so beautifully directed, you see a screen full of movie stars, but some of them you may not have heard of before. They were movie stars without the roles they needed to become movie stars.
The movie features a cast of emerging and seasoned talents, including Anthony Ramos as a bodega owner with dreams of returning to the Dominican Republic, Melissa Barrera as an aspiring fashion designer and Leslie Grace as a struggling Stanford student, and was shot on location with all the panache that a reported $55 million budget can achieve. Depressingly, Miranda said, the show and now the film remain an anomaly. He hopes for the day when In the Heights is free of the burden of representation that it bears, as more productions of its size and cultural relevance receive equal support and exposure.
Read the interview to the three creatives under the cut.