Lin-Manuel Miranda returned to the Oscars on Sunday night to introduce a celebration of iconic songs in the movies during the ceremony. On the red carpet before the show, the “Hamilton” creator had the opportunity to talk about how his own upcoming movie musical. Warner Bros.’ “In the Heights,” a cinematic adaptation of Miranda’s first Broadway musical of the same name, arrives in theaters on June 26. Miranda is co-producing the film, playing a small role and has written a new song for this version.
“[It’s a] new closing credits song,” Miranda told Variety. “I didn’t want to spend time fighting for a new song when I knew I wanted as many of the original songs in the show as possible.”
Elaborating on his approach to crafting the additional number, Miranda said he didn’t want to distract from the finality of the narrative, instead offering one last chance to be around the characters. “It’s a summer jam. The final song of ‘In the Heights’… tells the story so completely,” he said. “I just wanted to write a song where you get to hang with the characters a little longer this summer. And it will be sung by some of the principal actors in the movie.”
Miranda also recalled his time writing “In the Heights” in college twenty years ago. When asked if his undergraduate self had ever thought he’d ever be discussing his work at the Academy Awards, Miranda laughed. “A small part of me did, in the same way I thought I’d be a Jedi knight when I was three years old. But you have to dream that big for it get there. If you dream small, you’ll live small. I understand the possibilities were infinitesimal, but I’m thrilled we’re here and we’re talking about it.”