The long-aborning film adaptation of In the Heights is getting the fresh start its creators hoped for. Film rights to the Tony-winning musical, which were once held by the faltering Weinstein Co., have reverted back to the show’s writers, composer-lyricist Lin-Manuel Miranda and playwright Quiara Alegría Hudes, after the studio failed to put In the Heights into production by the end of 2017.
Hudes adapted her Tony-nominated book for the screen, while Jon M. Chu is attached to direct. According to Deadline, the project may now find a home at Warner Bros. or Disney, where Miranda just completed Mary Poppins Returns.
Last fall, Hudes was the first to call for Weinstein Co. to hand over rights to the film in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal that cracked open decades of institutionalized sexism and sexual predation plaguing the entertainment industry.
“As a woman, I can no longer do business with The Weinstein Company. To those women who suffered directly at Harvey’s hands, I extend my sincerest compassion and support,” Hudes wrote on Twitter.
She continued, “In the Heights is part of my heart and soul. I created it about respect, community, and solidarity. I hope The Weinstein Company has enough grace, in the wake of the revelations, to respect my stand as a woman, and to allow us to extricate In the Heights from them. In the Heights deserves a fresh start in a studio where I’ll feel safe (as will my actors and collaborators).”
Miranda retweeted Hudes’ statement, adding, “As usual, Quiara does the prose best. She speaks for us both.”
Plans from the Weinstein Company to produce the film were first reported in May 2016. The project had been in development years before then; Universal Pictures had initially picked it up but released the rights in 2011.