Lin-Manuel Miranda Reveals Why He Tweaked a Lyric in ‘In The Heights’ Movie

Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jon M. Chu are on the cover of the latest issue of Variety.

Here’s what the 41-year-old playwright and the 41-year-old director had to say…

Lin-Manuel Miranda, on the long struggle to get In the Heights made into a movie, which was first optioned by Universal: “I was so naive. I thought once a studio buys the rights to the movie, the movie’s getting made. I didn’t know the sheer tonnage of miles between acquiring the rights and a green light. You can find interviews of me being like, the In the Heights movie is happening any minute now!”

Find out what else they said…

Lin-Manuel Miranda, on why he was, at first, against delaying the release of the film due to COVID-19 and Jon M. Chu’s argument that changed his mind: “I very publicly was the one person who was really against it. I was like, ‘How can we hang onto this for a year when we know how wonderful it is?’ Jon’s argument to me, which is the correct one, is we can release it now and people would feel good to have it in their homes. Or we can release it with the right push next year, and then we create a lane of Latinx stars so that I never have to sit in a meeting and hear someone say, ‘Do they test international?’”

Jon M. Chu on making stories that drive change: “When you are trying to make stories that change what we’ve seen before, you can get caught in the small things. But you try to do as much as you can, to be as truthful as you can. And the rest, other people are going to fill. We got to crack it open a little bit.”

Lin-Manuel Miranda, on removing Donald Trump from the lyrics of “96,000”: “When I wrote it, he was an avatar for the Monopoly man. He was just, like, a famous rich person. Then when time moves on and he becomes the stain on American democracy, you change the lyric. Time made a fool of that lyric, and so we changed it.”

Find out when In The Heights is being released!

For more from Jon M. Chu and Lin-Manuel Miranda, head to Variety.com.

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