Director Jon M. Chu shared the news on Twitter writing, “Surprise. We coming to Theaters one week earlier!!! There has been so much demand since our trailer release this week that we decided to get it out to you sooner. Let’s gooooooooooooo!!!! See you soon. JUNE 11th 2021.”
“In the Heights” was originally scheduled to debut last June, but the movie was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The film, like the rest of Warner Bros.’ 2021 slate, is debuting simultaneously on HBO Max and will be available on the streaming platform for 31 days.
The release date shift will likely please movie theater owners, who have been desperate for new films to decorate marquees and entice patrons. Moviegoing has been slow to return in the U.S., though exhibitors hope it will pick up now that cinemas in New York City and Los Angeles, two major movie markets, have been given permission to reopen.
“Hamilton” alum Anthony Ramos stars as Usnavi, a bodega owner with big dreams in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan. “In the Heights” also features Corey Hawkins, Leslie Grace, Melissa Barrera, Jimmy Smits, Olga Merediz, Daphne Rubin-Vega and Stephanie Beatriz. Miranda, who portrayed Usnavi on Broadway, has a small role in the film, which was written by Quiara Alegria Hudes.
Chu has described “In the Heights” as “a beautiful story about change.”
“You can’t change the world if they don’t want to change,” he said. “But never underestimate the power of planting a seed. I believe that this movie is an amazingly beautiful seed that can change a lot of minds.”