The smash hit musical Hamilton is back – sort of.
Lin Manuel Miranda’s hip hop take on the founding father, which set records on Broadway and has been a hot ticket for half a decade, is premiering on Disney+ Friday – the eve of Independence Day. Paid subscribers are the only ones who will be able to watch the filmed version of the musical, as the streaming service is not making it available to those on a free trial at this point. Disney+ is $6.99/mo for a standalone subscription but can be bundled with Hulu and ESPN+ for $12.99/mo. Sign up for Disney+ here.
Filed over a three day period at New York’s Richard Rogers Theatre in 2016, the streaming version of Hamilton features the original cast, including lyricist and composer Miranda. It was originally planned for a theatrical release, but shifted to the streaming platform due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“One of the things that we were always running up against on Broadway is how prohibitive Broadway was for a lot of people,” cast member Daveed Diggs, who played Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson, said during a Zoom press conference with the Hamilton team on June 16. “Folks just couldn’t afford the ticket. And even if you could, there are only so many seats.”
Cameras were positioned in the audience for actual live performances of the musical, while additional footage was captured with the performers between shows to add additional shots specific to the filmed version. That allowed for the use of cranes and dolly shots that would have otherwise impacted the audience ability to enjoy the show as it was being filmed, but were integral to the experience for the audiences at home.
“The task for me was to try to create a document of what it felt like to be in that room,” filmmaker Thomas Kail said. “This is not trying to be the show. This is its own experience and I think we tried to embrace the love we have for being in the theater.”
“This is better than the best seat in the house at Hamilton,” Miranda said. “Tommy very deliberately breaks the proscenium in places.”
Watch the trailer below:
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