Disney Announces The Date Of 'Hamilton' Movie Release

May 12, 2020
Originally published on May 12, 2020 8:13 pm
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MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Broadway's "Hamilton" will be coming to screens, small screens, much earlier than expected. The Walt Disney Company announced today that the filmed stage version of Lin-Manuel Miranda's smash hit about America's founders will arrive on Disney Plus on July 3 - so just in time for Independence Day. NPR's Bob Mondello has details.

BOB MONDELLO, BYLINE: Standing-room-only crowds greeted "Hamilton" in every city, and then, suddenly, the coronavirus meant it couldn't play in any city.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "MY SHOT")

LIN-MANUEL MIRANDA: (Singing) I am not throwing away my shot. I am not throwing away my shot.

MONDELLO: The Broadway stage show was filmed back in 2016 just a week before the original cast left the production. Disney reportedly paid $75 million for the worldwide rights. It announced that it would release the film in theaters in October of 2021. Seemed like genius at the time - gave the Broadway and touring production space to sell lots of tickets at several hundred dollars a seat. But when the pandemic emptied live theaters and made the future of movie openings unpredictable, that logic flew out the window.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "ALEXANDER HAMILTON")

LESLIE ODOM JR: (Singing) The world will never be the same.

MONDELLO: Disney has several finished movies it can't release and theme parks sitting empty. Disneyland Shanghai just reopened but with strictly limited capacity. The one bright spot in Disney's portfolio, in fact, is its new streaming platform. Disney Plus just hit 50 million subscribers - well ahead of the company's expectations. Now, in addition, to all the Marvel, "Star Wars" Pixar and Disney catalogue attractions that have brought it all those customers, it will have the only Broadway show that anyone can see anywhere.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THE ROOM WHERE IT HAPPENS")

ODOM: (Singing) No one else was in the room where it happened, the room where it happened, the room where it happened.

MONDELLO: The room where it happens in July could be your living room. I'm Bob Mondello.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THE ROOM WHERE IT HAPPENS")

ODOM: (Singing) No one really knows how the game is played, the art of the trade, how the sausage gets made. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.