It’s finally 2021, and we are moving onward and upward with a positive and exciting outlook on our new normal. One of those things that we can all get the feels for is… MUSICALS! Musical adaptations start this year; there will be some pretty awesome releases of musical adaptations to theatres and streaming services. Many of the movies slated for release last year got pushed back for later dates due to the pandemic. Starting with the much anticipated “In The Heights” movie, an adaptation of Lin Manuel-Miranda and Quiara Alegria Hudes Tony Award-winning musical!
Directed by Jon M. Chu, “In The Heights” tells the residents’ story in the Washington Heights neighborhood in Manhattan, NY. Tony nominee Cory Hawkins will play Benny alongside Anthony Ramos, who plays the main character of Usnavi, and singer/songwriter Leslie Grace who plays Nina. The production will be streaming on HBOMax and premiering in theatres simultaneously.
Following the release of “In The Heights” in June, “West Side Story” is slated for release in December 2021. This adaptation will be directed by Stephen Speilberg and stars David Alvarez, Ariana Debose, Rachel Zegler, and Ansel Elgort. Everyone is ready to dive into Tony and Maria’s romance and get caught up in the kids’ twists and twirls in the Upper West Side. The cast is rounded out with Rita Moreno, who played the role of Anita in the 1961 film, this time around, she will be seen on screen as Valentina, newly created role.
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“Dear Evan Hansen” is another adaptation set for release in September, with Ben Platt reprising his award-winning role. The Stephen Chbosky directed film will be bringing the gripping tale to the big screen and delivering an all-star cast. Amandla Stenberg is set to play Alana Beck alongside Kaitlyn Denver, who plays Evan’s crush, Zoe Murphy.
Other musical adaptations that are slated for release may be arriving a little later than this year, but we are excited to hear about them all the same. With the top must-see being “The Color Purple.” The film adaptation is set for release in December of 2023 and directed by Blitz Bazawule (Beyonce’s Black Is King). Oprah Winfrey, Quincy Jones, Scott Sanders, and Steven Spielberg will be producing, and with the film currently in development, there hasn’t been any word about casting. Still, with star power like that behind the scenes, you can guarantee that the cast will be just as phenomenal.