• Golden Globe Awards

Nominee Profile 2021: Lin-Manuel Miranda, “Hamilton”

Since the musical Hamilton premiered on Broadway in 2015 and achieved pop-culture phenomenon status, Lin-Manuel Miranda has become a household name. 2020, however, was definitely a year that consolidated the artist’s gravitas in the core of the entertainment industry. With the release of the movie adaptation of Hamilton on the Disney+ platform, Miranda made news headlines not only for his performance as a leading actor but also for having created this piece that accumulated over 25 million views just on its first month of release. A record.
A professed lover of theater and of the allure of a live performance, Miranda praises just as much the possibility that cinema brings to the democratization of content and culture. “If the legacy of this is that more filmed versions of original productions are able to be released theatrically, I would be so thrilled with that. I think that is a win for musical theater, I think that is a win for cinema. The magic and the tough thing about a show is that it’s ephemeral, right? Theater artists are always writing in the melting snow. As a theater writer, you want as many people to see the work as possible. At first, you want them to see it in the live way you intended it, but I am thrilled that we were able to provide access in this way.”
At the core of his creative force, Miranda confesses having the desire to portray Latinos “in the everyday mode he is used to and not just in gangs”. As a Puerto Rican, he feels his community has been misrepresented and believes art is a powerful way through which those misconceptions can be deconstructed. Family, nevertheless, is what inspires him.
“I think I inherited my love of the arts from my father and my mother. Also, the thing that made me feel like I understood Hamilton as a character was the fact that this is a kid who grew up in the Caribbean and wrote his way to a scholarship in the mainland and that’s exactly what my father did at the same age as Hamilton. I knew this guy. I knew how to write him. If there is anything Hamilton and my father share is that they were relentless. There is no relaxing with either Hamilton or my dad. When I am playing Hamilton, I am playing Luis Miranda.”
The admiration for his father is underlined even further in an HBO documentary Siempre, Luis released last year. Lin-Manuel Miranda wanted to make sure the world knew the inspirational force his father was not only for his family but also for his community.
Recipient of the MacArthur Genius Award (2015) and the Pulitzer Prize (2016) for “Hamilton”, Lin-Manuel Miranda made sure his public recognition helped him achieve more while being politically active. He met with politicians in 2016 to speak out in favor of debt relief for Puerto Rico and raised funds for rescue efforts and disaster relief after Hurricane Maria struck the island in 2017.
After participating as an actor in the latest movie version of Mary Poppins Returns and in the TV show His Dark Materials, Miranda keeps striving for more. In the near future Tick, Tick… Boom! – a movie he will co-produce alongside Ron Howard and Brian Grazer – will mark his directorial debut. Also, In the Heights, Miranda’s first musical is set to be premiering in cinemas sometime in 2021. 
As far as inspiration goes, for this artist, it all seems very clear:
“For me, inspiration is empathy. You learn everything you can about the world, about the character and then you put yourself in that character’s shoes and you talk to yourself until it feels true. It’s research and empathy.”