High pressure from the Atlantic is bringing glorious highs of 24C in south eastern regions today, according to Netweather. But before the hot weather arrives,…
Even if you haven’t forked up more than $800 to see Hamilton, we’re positive you know the major plot points of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical. Side note: who knew American history and hip-hop went so well together? Clearly, composer and playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda, who wrote and starred in the musical, which tells the story of the nation’s founding fathers with a focus on the United States’ first Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton (played by Miranda).
The show’s impact can be seen in pop culture and on Black Lives Matter protest posters nationwide with phrases from the show, including “It’s not a moment, it’s a movement,” per WBAL, and “History has its eyes on you.” While the show is gaining momentum — and getting the Disney+ treatment — the original cast members are taking their breakout fame and moving on to bigger and better things since ending their runs on Broadway. So what have the major players been up to? Let’s check it out.
Lin-Manuel Miranda has even more revolutionary projects in the works
The genius behind Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda, has a lot to celebrate these days. His latest inked deal with Disney+ will surely add more dollar signs to his net worth which, as of this writing, sits at $80 million, per Celebrity Net Worth. According to The Verge, Hamilton will begin streaming on the platform on July 3, 2020, but with a couple of f-bombs muted to keep its PG-13 rating, per the Motion Picture Association of America’s guidelines.
“If we have to mute a word here or there to reach the largest audience possible, I’m OK with that,” Miranda told The New York Times’ Kyle Buchanan in February 2020. Outside of the Hamilton success, the New York-native is working on an animation series with Disney Animation, per Deadline.
“I’m actually writing a new animated musical with Disney Animation,” Miranda revealed during a Good Morning America appearance in late June 2020. “I’m collaborating with the Zootopia guys and Jared Bush, who wrote Moana with me. It’s set in Colombia, in Latin America and that’s all I can say before Bob Iger just shows up in my home.”
In July 2019, CNN reported that Miranda was also working on a documentary on actress/singer/dancer Rita Moreno, tentatively titled Rita Moreno: The Girl Who Decided to Go For It. All that to say, it doesn’t seem like we’ll have to wait too long to see the playwright’s name up in lights again.
Leslie Odom Jr. will be in a quarantine-themed love story
Broadway actor and singer Leslie Odom Jr. went toe-to-toe with Lin-Manuel Miranda on stage as politician and lawyer Aaron Burr in Hamilton. Thanks to his portrayal of the historic figure, Odom Jr. nabbed a Tony Award in 2016 for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical and a Grammy Award in 2015 for Best Musical Theater Album as a principal vocalist. Odom Jr. seems to be the perfect person for historical, culture-shifting roles as he goes on to play other important names in history.
Most notably, he appeared in the 2019 feature film Harriet — the story of abolitionist and activist Harriet Tubman and her escape from slavery — as writer and civil rights activist William Still. Additionally, Odom Jr. is slated to appear as ’60s crooner Sam Cooke in the film adaption of the play One Night in Miami. The play recounts the aftermath following Muhammad Ali’s defeat of Sonny Liston in a 1964 boxing match. As of this writing, there’s no release date for this project.
On the small screen, Odom Jr. also has big things in the works. According to Playbill, the Hamilton lead will star in a four-part limited series titled Love in the Time of Corona alongside actress Nicolette Robinson, who is actually his leading lady in real life. The two will appear as a couple that “must reevaluate their relationship while raising their daughter” while also dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. The show is set to premiere on Freeform in August 2020.
Daveed Diggs is finding new ways to use his voice
Daveed Diggs is not a stranger to the hip-hop world, which is why Hamilton was right up his cultural alley. The California-native played not one, but two major roles in the Broadway show: President Thomas Jefferson and French military officer (and spy) Marquis de Lafayette, which ended up being perfect for the former rapper.
“I have this thing. I can rap really fast. I can rap really, really fast. It’s a thing I’m good at and I’ve trained myself to do …,” he said in a 2016 interview with the Observer. “Lin [Miranda] likes writing for me because I can do things he can’t. He can write these things he can’t do, but which I find technically pretty easy.”
Following his fast-rapping role, Diggs went on to work on animated film titled Soul, alongside Jamie Foxx, Quest Love, Angela Bassett, and more. The project is slated to hit theaters in November 2020. He also snagged a role in the live-action remake of Disney’s 1989 film The Little Mermaid. With R&B singer Halle Bailey playing Ariel, Diggs will voice her trusty crab sidekick, Sebastian. According to an April 2020 Digital Spy article, the film is set to premiere on Nov.19, 2021.
Phillipa Soo wants to be in the room where it happens
While Hamilton is pretty much about the men, we cannot ignore the powerful female voices in our American history, one being Alexander Hamilton’s wife, Elizabeth “Eliza” Hamilton (née Schuyler). The role in the hit Broadway musical was originated by Chinese-American actress Phillipa Soo.
The Juilliard School graduate told Playbill that she’s “driven by great storytelling and great rooms with great people” and it shows. Her iconic portrayal of Eliza shined a light on the erasure of women’s role in history and even though she vowed to “erase herself from the narrative,” Eliza’s role as a philanthropist helped many people later in her life, and may be deserving of her own musical, honestly.
Soo is no stranger to bringing a deeper meaning to her roles. She was first widely recognized for her vocal involvement in Moana on the Oscar-nominated track “How Fall I’ll Go,” which was also written by Lin-Manuel Miranda. Soo also brought her melodic voice to the forthcoming animated, Netflix original musical film Over the Moon, which is about a young, Chinese girl who is determined to discover the existence of a mythological Moon Goddess. The adorable film is expected to premiere in fall 2020 on the streaming platform.
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