It is no secret that “Weird Al” Yankovic and Lin-Manuel Miranda are friends and mutual admirers. In fact, the two were hanging out together when they found out that they would be getting stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The friendship between these two is the kind of musical collaboration and bromance the world deserves and it has been great seeing the kinship grow on social media.
That being said, it was only a matter of time until Yankovic took a swing at “Hamilton” and created a funny version of the wildly successful broadway show. Well, wait no longer. Jimmy Fallon and Miranda released a reaction video of themselves listening to “The Hamilton Polka” for the first time. The first listen is as hilarious as you’d expect from Yankovic.
Gone are the hip-hop vibes from the soundtrack replaced with accordions and wind instruments meant to give it a very Bavarian feel. Miranda, the Puerto Rican brain behind “Hamilton”, spends the whole video laughing hysterically at how his music sounds with the anglo-styled upgrade.
“The Hamilton Polka” is a five-minute speed round of the entire “Hamilton” musical. Yankovic was able to boil down the entire musical into five minutes and did not lose any of the integrity of the story, which is not an easy feat.
This is all part of Miranda’s Hamildrop series which allows for a collection of various artists to come up with different versions of the “Hamilton” music in their genres. Some of the artists included in this series are Nas, The Decemberists, Dave East and Aloe Blacc.
As you may have heard, there’s an “In The Heights” movie in the works. The production, produced by Lin-Manuel Miranda and directed by Jon M. Chu, will start shooting later this summer. While they have their main cast in place, they just had a casting call for extras. They specifically said they were looking for Latinos and would be in Washington Heights for the open call. Since they were in the area for the casting call, which is where the movie will be shot as well, the movie’s VIP crew had some time to check in on another important group.
Lin-Manuel Miranda stopped by during a school production of “In The Heights” at George Washington High School in New York and surprised the cast.
“We saw In The Heights in the Heights for the first time, with kids from all over the neighborhood,” Miranda tweeted. “It’s cool I only cried 10 times. These kids were so good. Our future is so bright.”
Jon M. Chu, director of “Crazy Rich Asians,” tweeted the moment when Miranda stepped onstage.
Some of the students were clearly surprised to see Miranda there, although not everyone, and we think we know why. If you watch the clip, Chu shoots the entire audience as well as the cast on stage. There were a lot of special guests in the audience, one of them being Luis A. Miranda, Jr., Lin’s dad. So, we’re not sure how much of this surprise was kept under wraps.
Other special guests included Quiara Alegría Hudes, who wrote the screenplay for the new “In The Heights” movie.
We’re wondering if some of the students will be cast in the new movie. Why not? They need extras and clearly, these kids know a thing or two about the story. Might as well give a chance.
We also loved seeing all the selfies of Miranda with all of the students.
“Love working with you guys. #intheheights #intheheightsmusical,” Rubi Camila Perez Guzman shared on Instagram.
This kind of happiness is the best.
“Words cannot describe how thankful I am to be part of the show In The Heights,” Rebecca said on her social media page. “I got the opportunity to be part of a group of greats actors that are my family now. We worked for almost 4 months on this project and it was all worth it at the end to give this surprise to Lin Manuel Miranda. May 31 will be a night that I’ll never forget.”
What a spectacular night for Miranda, the cast of “In the Heights,” and the students.
“Had such an amazing time working with these amazing talented people,” Alexia Stewart posted on Instagram. “Thank you guys soooo much for accepting me into your family at such short notice. I love you all and I can’t wait till next year when I see you guys again.”
The film adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Broadway hit “In the Heights” is scheduled to hit movie theaters in 2020. As expected, many are excited to see Miranda’s acclaimed play come to the big screen after many years of waiting. The musical is based on the lives of young Latino immigrants living in the Washington Heights neighborhood in New York City. The musical left its mark in 2008 by bringing a Tony award-winning play featuring hip-hop to Broadway.
The film has been in production for a few years and we are finally getting a look at who will be starring in the movie. Here’s who we know that will part of the highly anticipated production.
Anthony Ramos will be playing Usnavi de la Vega.
Many might be familiar with Anthony Ramos for his role in Miranda’s other hit musical “Hamilton” and in last years “A Star Is Born.” So it’s no surprise that Ramos will be starring in another musical but this time as the lead role. He’ll be playing Usnavi de la Vega, the owner of a small bodega in Washington Heights. Ramos is of Puerto Rican descent and is engaged to Jasmine Cepha Jones, another “Hamilton” cast member.
Corey Hawkins is bringing Benny to life on the big screen.
Corey Hawkins will be playing the role of Benny, Nina’s Father. Hawkin’s character is notable since it’s the only role that doesn’t speak Spanish in the production. Hawkins made his film debut portraying Dr. Dre in 2015’s “Straight Outta Compton” and will be returning to the big screen once again.
Sonny de la Vega will be played by Gregory Diaz.
He might be just 14-year-old but Gregory Diaz but he’s already well-known on the musical stage. He made his Broadway debut in 2016 on “Matilda” to critical acclaim. He will now tackle the role of Sonny De La Vega, Usnavi’s witty younger cousin. We can expect great things from Diaz as we have already seen.
Melissa Barrera is giving us the Vanessa fans deserve.
Melissa Barrera got her breakout role last year in the hit Starz show “Vida,” that is entering its second season. The Latina actress has also starred in various Mexican novellas but she might have landed her biggest role as Vanessa, Usnavi’s love interest. There’s no doubt Barrera was born to play this role and has the chops to do it justice.
Leslie Grace will be playing Nina Rosario.
Leslie Grace, known for her singing career, is going to be transitioning to the big screen. She’ll be playing Nina Rosario, the first person in her family to go to college and returns home for the summer to let her family know she’s dropped out. Born to Dominican parents and raised in Bronx, New York, Grace was born to play this role and will surely a strong Hollywood debut.
Who else can play Kevin Rosario than Jimmy Smits.
Jimmy Smits will be playing the character of Kevin Rosario, Nina’s overprotective father. He most famously appeared in the “Star Wars” series in the 2000s and has a slew of TV roles. He’s the perfect role for this character and with a strong acting resume like Smits, he’s sure to nail it.
Daphne Rubin-Vega (Daniela)
A veteran of the Broadway stage, Daphne Rubin-Vega will be playing Daniela, the energetic owner of a salon where the girls come to talk. Vega, who is of Panamanian descent, starred in the critically acclaimed musical “RENT’ and also the TV show “Smash.”
Stephanie Beatriz is giving us an energetic and exciting Carla.
Stephanie Beatriz, currently starring in the hit show “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” will be playing the role of Carla, who works at Daniela’s salon. The character works alongside Vanessa and is of Chilean, Cuban, Dominican, and Puerto Rican descent. Beatriz, born in Argentina, has made a name for herself on the TV circuit with a role as Gloria in “Modern Family” as well.
Dascha Polanco is giving Cuca her own twist.
Dascha Polanco starred in the Netflix series “Orange is the New Black” as Dayanara “Daya” Diaz. The role got her a lot of notoriety and now she’ll be making her big screen debut as Cuca. The Dominican-American actress is sure to light up the screen as she did on the Netflix series.
Who else could capture the essence of Abuela Claudia than Olga Merediz?
Olga Merediz will be reprising the role of Abuela Claudia as she did on the Broadway stage. Born in Guantánamo, Cuba, Merediz has received a Tony award for her work on “In The Heights” and has a lengthy career in the entertainment industry. This includes roles in “Les Misérables” and in “Mamma Mia!”. We can’t wait for her to reprise this role and bring that character to the big screen next year.