"In The Heights" Arrives In Theaters Wednesday

The movie was adapted from the 2008 Broadway play about Washington Heights. CBS2's Aundrea Cline-Thomas spoke with the film's creators about the pride and message they hope to send.

Video Transcript

- "In The Heights" arrives on the big screen this Wednesday. The movie is based on the 2008 Tony award winning Broadway musical about Washington Heights.

- All kinds of anticipation already up town. CBS 2's Aundrea Cline-Thomas reports on the movie's message of hope.

[MUSIC - LIN-MANUEL MIRANDA, "IN THE HEIGHTS"] (SINGING) But we live with just enough. In the heights. I flip the lights and start my day.

AUNDREA CLINE-THOMAS: "In The Heights" is a movie about the hopes and dreams of a Dominican bodega owner played by Anthony Ramos, a star in the making. Through music, a colorful mix of characters introduces the Washington Heights neighborhood to the world.

QUIARA ALEGRIA HUDES: School was where I went to learn about everyone but myself. So I'm trying to add our piece of the narrative to, you know, to this nation's bookshelves and cinemas.

AUNDREA CLINE-THOMAS: Screenwriter Quiara Alegria Hudes, who also wrote the book for the Broadway musical, teamed up with Lin-Manuel Miranda again, and director Jon Chu, to bring the Tony award winning Broadway musical to the big screen-- Transforming the Washington Heights neighborhood into a movie set featuring areas like Audubon Avenue, and the Highbridge Pool.

JON CHU: I would say hundreds of people from the neighborhood, and including the last, even the end credits, are pictures taken by people of the neighborhood, of the neighborhood themselves.

AUNDREA CLINE-THOMAS: Resident Louis Castelan may have his five seconds of fame.

LOUIS CASTELAN: I have to go to the store so they will be like, hold on, wait a minute. And then when the scene started I would like just walk through, and you know, we just walked through as extras.

AUNDREA CLINE-THOMAS: The film is already getting rave reviews and Councilman Rodriguez says Hollywood should take notice.

YDANIS RODRIGUEZ: That there's a commitment to bring actors, to bring the sound engineer, to bring the director, that should look like what the United States, which is a diverse country.

AUNDREA CLINE-THOMAS: Now a narrative providing authenticity to the storytelling of a community of immigrants.

YDANIS RODRIGUEZ: For many decades that there have been so many negative profile. People would look at us about crack, people look at us as people who had to be dealing with crimes and violence.

AUNDREA CLINE-THOMAS: While the pandemic may have delayed the release of the movie, its creators say the message is right on time. In Washington Heights, Aundrea Cline-Thomas CBS 2 News.

[MUSIC - LIN-MANUEL MIRANDA, "IN THE HEIGHTS'] (SINGING) So far away-- But as for mañana mi pana, ya gotta just keep watchin' you'll see--

- I never got to see it on Broadway. I'm looking forward to seeing it.

- And it's going to be great.

- Yes.

- Can't wait.