Earlier this past week, PBS aired a rerun of the behind the scenes documentary In The Heights: Chasing Broadway Dreams. This documentary is giving us so much hype as we countdown the days till next Summer (hopefully once all with Live Theater and Entertainment is back to normal) for the highly anticipated film adaptation of IN THE HEIGHTS. To give everyone the hype, here once again is the new trailer for the film version of Lin-Manuel Miranda's debut musical. The film will be released on June 18th, 2021 from Warner Bros. Pictures.
Originally it was set for a June 26th, 2020 release. However, everything (including movie theaters) were shutdown due to this continuation of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Under the direction of Jon M. Chu and an updated screenplay by Quiara Alegria Hudes and Marc Klein, the cast will be led by….
Anthony Ramos as "Usnavi",
Corey Hawkins as "Benny",
Gregory Diaz as "Sonny",
Melissa Barrera as "Vanessa",
Leslie Grace as "Nina Rosario",
Jimmy Smits as "Kevin Rosario",
Dascha Polanco as "Cuca" (in place of "Camila Rosario"),
Daphne Rubin Vega as "Daniella",
Stephanie Beatriz as "Carla",
Lin Manuel Miranda as "The Piragua Guy",
and Olga Merediz reprising her Tony nominated performance as "Abuela Claudia".
In case anyone may not be familiar or need a reminder, IN THE HEIGHTS follows 3 days in the lives of residents in one of New York’s most famous upper West Side neighborhoods…. Washington Heights. It featured an incredible blend of original Hip Hop, Rap, Pop, Soulful, and Latin music. It features an original score by Lin Manuel Miranda and a book by Quiara Alegria Hudes. Notable songs include IN THE HEIGHTS, BREATHE, IT WON'T BE LONG NOW, 96,000, PACIENCA Y FE, WHEN YOU'RE HOME, SUNRISE, CARNAVAL DE BARRIO, and more.
Before his ultimate worldwide phenomenon Hamilton, IN THE HEIGHTS was first conceived by Lin-Manuel Miranda in 1999 during his Sophomore year of college at Wesleyan University. Following seeing the musicals RENT and THE CAPEMAN on Broadway, he wanted to create his own show that takes place in the present day mixing Latin, hip hop, and rap into one show. He was inspired my his family routes, childhood, and living in Washington Heights, Manhattan. After a year of writing, the show got accepted into Wesleyan’s student Theater company called Second Stage (not related to the Off Broadway Theater company we know today) in the Spring of 2000. This 3 night only debut got the attention of fellow Wesleyan students consisting of John Buffalo Mailer, Neil Stewart, Anthony Veneziale, and Thomas Kail (who went on to direct the production). They wanted to expand the production and make it a full scale musical. In addition, Quiara Alegria Hudes came on board as an additional book writer. 5 rough drafts of the musical were made. Lot of the creations were actually done in the basement of the Drama Book Shop.
Following over 7 1/2 years of readings and workshops, the show had its world premiere Off Broadway in 2007 at 37 Arts Theatre (now Baryshnikov Arts Center) and the response from critics and the audience exploded.. From there, the show went on to Broadway at the Richard Rodgers Theatre where it ran for a complete total of 1,213 performances. Under the direction of Thomas Kail and choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler, the cast consisted of….
Lin Manuel Miranda (later Javier Munoz, Corbin Bleu, and Kyle Beltran) as “Usnavi”,
Christopher Jackson (later Clifton Oliver) as “Benny”,
Robin De Jesus (later David Del Rio, Jon Rua, and Shaun Taylor-Corbett) as “Sonny”,
Karen Olivo (later Marcy Harriell) as "Vanessa",
Seth Stewart (later William B. Wingfield) as “Graffiti Pete”,
Carlos Gomez (later Rick Negron) as “Kevin Rosario”,
Tony winner Priscilla Lopez as “Camila Rosario”,
Andrea Burns (later Bianca Marroquin) as "Daniella",
Janet Decal (later Courtney Reed) as "Carla",
Eliseo Roman as "The Piragua Guy".
and Tony nominee Olga Merediz as “Abuela Claudia”.
The show was nominated for 13 Tony Awards in 2008 winning 4 including Best Musical. In addition, the show also went on to win for Best Musical Theatre Album at the Grammy Awards.
From there, IN THE HEIGHTS has went on to present productions across America, London’s West End, Japan, Philippines, and around the world. The show is also currently being performed in Schools, Community, and Regional Theaters everywhere.
Who is excited for the IN THE HEIGHTS film?!!!