[The rights to the Broadway musical In The Heights] were acquired by Universal the same year Mamma Mia! happened. That was a big honking movie musical, and so Heights was pitched as a big honking movie musical. Two years later, it went into turnaround. My experience with the studio was: "We're going to make a big honking musical. Oh, we can't afford that musical. Goodbye."
The world has changed since then. You're seeing the power of the Latino dollar in the marketplace more than ever, and now we're aiming for a scrappy $15 million movie of Heights that is more in keeping with the spirit of the show. There's a new screenplay.
To read Lin-Manuel Miranda's words in The Hollywood Reporter's cover story on him, click here.
I love [Emmy Award-winning actor, standup comedian, writer, director, producer, editor, and creator of the TV series "Louie"] Louis C.K. I'm proud that he's a Latino, too, and he was asked to comment about people tweeting him about other comedians stealing his material. His response is, "Well, f—, I'll write more jokes"— which is exactly the right response. You have to believe your next idea is better than your last one. I was disappointed when In the Heights went into turnaround, but I was already pregnant with my next idea.
What I can tell you is that works of art are the only silver bullet we have against racism and sexism and hatred.... Art engenders empathy in a way that politics doesn't, and in a way that nothing else really does. Art creates change in people's hearts. But it happens slowly. –Actor, rapper, writer and composer Lin-Manuel Miranda (currently on Broadway in the critically acclaimed hit Broadway musical Hamilton)