Long before Quiara Alegría Hudes wrote the screenplay for the new movie musical In the Heights, she wrote the book for…well, the stage musical In the Heights, sharing duties with songwriter Lin-Manuel Miranda. But a lot happened between those projects. She’s kept busy. She’s written more plays, more musicals. She wrote a children’s book. She won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for her play Water by the Spoonful. Not asking her back to shepherd her Tony Award-winning Broadway musical about life and love in Washington Heights would’ve been a crime.
Ahead of the theatrical and streaming release of In the Heights this Friday, I spoke with Hudes over Zoom. We chatted about seeing the movie with an audience, what you can do on film that you can’t on stage (food close-ups!), and how her additional role as a producer allowed her to ensure the film remained authentic and true to the neighborhood in which it is set.
In the Heights hits theaters and HBO Max on June 11, 2021.
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