According to an exclusive by Deadline, Lin-Manuel Miranda, the writer and star of both In The Heights and the smash Broadway hit Hamilton, has officially been chosen to direct the film adaption of the late Johnathan Larson‘s (RENT) autobiographical comedy Tick, Tick… Boom!
Although Miranda has become a household name within the past few years after the major success of his rap-opera based on the life of founding father Alexander Hamilton, this project marks his first time in the director’s chair, especially within the realm of film. The opportunity came as a major win for Miranda as a life long fan of Larson and his immaculate work.
After Larson’s tragic death the opening night of his hit rock-opera RENT in 1996, Miranda was lucky enough to star in a rendition of Tick, Tick… Boom! nearly 20 years later. Miranda said this about Larson’s work and the impact it had on his career as well as his excitement for the new film:
“Tick, Tick…Boom! first entered my life in college when I was lucky enough to snag a seat at the Jane Street Theater in 2001… Jonathan Larson’s captivating storytelling in Rent first taught me that musicals could be contemporary, true to life, and depict your own experiences. But it was Tick, Tick…Boom! that solidified that drive in me to hone my own voice as a playwright. On stage, playing the role of Jon in 2014 was one of my most honored achievements. To now have the opportunity to make my film directorial debut, in collaboration with the Larson Family and this incredible creative team, and to adapt a work I love so deeply, is a humbling privilege. Together, we aim to honor Jonathan’s legacy and continue to position his work to inspire the next generation of storytellers.”
The plot line of the play-turned-film takes place in 1990, New York City. We follow, obviously, the character of Jon. Jon is a struggling theatre composer writing a play called Superbia while waiting tables. With his dream of becoming the next big name in theatre, his girlfriend Susan pressuring him to take the next step in their relationship, his roommate and best friend Michael giving up on his theatre career for a high-paying advertising job, and his 30th birthday approaching, Jon’s doubts and anxieties of his career cause him to question his life and choices.
Other names connected to the upcoming feature include Dear Evan Hansen book writer Steven Levenson as the set script writer, Imagine Entertainment chairmen Brian Grazer and Ron Howard as well as Julie Oh. Larson’s sister, Julie, will also come on as an executive producer.
Grazer stated the following about his interest in Larson’s story and those like it:
“From 8 Mile to Get On Up, I’ve always been personally drawn to stories that depict the perseverance and strength of character to follow one’s dreams… Jonathan Larson’s story is deeply moving and inspirational. Having the amazing talents and unique visions of Lin and Steven for the film adaptation is the perfect creative fit that adds to the project’s authenticity.”
We are excited to follow up on this project as it makes its way to the big screen.