Lin-Manuel Miranda is on the cover of Rolling Stone this month because he is a total swoon-worthy rockstar of a history maker.
Inside the issue is a lengthy interview, which I recommend reading in full. It’s got lots of great stories and insights into Miranda’s brain and the creation of Hamilton. But I thought I’d take a moment to share with you all the most disappointing (if totally expected) bit of the whole piece. Because Rolling Stone asked Miranda the question we all want the answer to: Will there be a Hamilton movie adaptation? And Miranda answered honestly.
Someday. Probably not for, like, 20 years.
I don’t think so. The thing is, we worked really hard to make this work as a piece of theater. And I get it - I get it 50 times a day: “Please film it! Please film it so we can watch it!” And I understand it’s hard to get to New York and it’s hard to get a Broadway ticket. At the same time, filming is an act of translation. It is not being in the room with us. It’s different. You will get the forest, you will not get the trees.
I don’t totally agree with that sentiment. The National Theatre Live initiative does a fantastic job of broadcasting stage plays in a way that is nearly as engaging as the live show itself. And it gives audiences the gift of being able to see tons of shows (like Benedict Cumberbatch in Frankenstein) that most of us would never otherwise be able to see.
As for an actual movie, though, of course Miranda has a great reason why he thinks it’ll be decades before we get one. He wants the best for us. But waiting for the best means we can’t have it nooooowwwww.
Well, there are some really good ones, but I will tell you, they’re all 20 years after the fact. Like, I thought Les Miz was a really strong adaptation. I thought Chicago was one of the best adaptations. Cabaret, which really took that show, a great show, and made it into a film that could never have existed in the theater. Like, you couldn’t do that film onstage. So someone’s going to have to have the brilliant idea of how to make this into a film on its own terms.
Instead, he’s focused on making sure as many people as possible can actually make it into the room where it happens.
Right. And right now, our responsibility, as I see it, is to get as many people in this room as possible. Prioritize kids for whom it will make a difference in their grades and lives. So that’s why we have this educational initiative that has 20,000 kids seeing it this year alone, and we’re replicating that program with our two national tours that are coming out within the year. We’re starting to cast the Chicago production right now. And again, it’s about getting people in the room to see the actual thing. And then there will be translations and adaptations, and that’s fine. I’m still waiting on the Wicked movie, man!
So there you have it. We’re gonna have to wait for it, wait for it. BUT WE DON’T WANNA.