Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton has been an enormous hit on stages around the world, and now the musical is set for a theatrical release from Disney with the original Broadway cast, including Miranda as the lead character Alexander Hamilton.
The film is of the original stage play and was shot in 2016 with multiple studios bidding for the rights to distribute it and having to pledge they would not do so until 2020 at the earliest. Disney is said to have forked out $75 million to secure the worldwide rights.
Directed by Thomas Kail, the film version is described as a “leap forward in the art of ‘live capture'” for musicals. Miranda, Kail and Jeffrey Seller are producers on the project. It tells the story of Alexander Hamilton, one of America’s Founding Fathers featuring more contemporary music like hip-hop, rap, R&B and soul.
“Lin-Manuel Miranda created an unforgettable theater experience and a true cultural phenomenon, and it was for good reason that Hamilton was hailed as an astonishing work of art,” said Disney’s CEO Bob Iger. “All who saw it with the original cast will never forget that singular experience. And we’re thrilled to have the opportunity to share this same Broadway experience with millions of people around the world.”
“I fell in love with musical storytelling growing up with the legendary Howard Ashman-Alan Menken Disney collaborations – The Little Mermaid, Beauty and The Beast, Aladdin,” Miranda said. “I’m so proud of what Tommy Kail has been able to capture in this filmed version of Hamilton– a live theatrical experience that feels just as immediate in your local movie theater. We’re excited to partner with Disney to bring the original Broadway company of Hamilton to the largest audience possible.”
“We are thrilled for fans of the show, and new audiences across the world, to experience what it was like on stage – and in the audience – when we shot this. … We wanted to give everyone the same seat, which is what this film can provide,” Kail said.
The original Hamilton cast includes Miranda as Alexander Hamilton; Daveed Diggs as Marquis de Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson; Renée Elise Goldsberry as Angelica Schuyler; and Leslie Odom, Jr. as Aaron Burr, Christopher Jackson as George Washington; Jonathan Groff as King George; Phillipa Soo as Eliza Hamilton, Jasmine Cephas Jones as Peggy Schuyler/Maria Reynolds, Okieriete Onaodowan as Hercules Mulligan/James Madison and Anthony Ramos as John Laurens/Philip Hamilton.
Hamilton will be released in North American theatres on October 15th, 2021.