'In the Heights' director Jon M. Chu brings his own big dreams to the big screen in new musical

HOLLYWOOD -- The movie "In the Heights" has been on hold during the pandemic. But the musical is finally out and hopes to remind us that family, friends and community are worth celebrating every day.

"In the Heights" started as a Tony winning musical back in 2008 from the mind of "Hamilton" creator Lin Manuel Miranda. The story of how we all have "El Sueñito," or a little dream, has been re-imagined for the big screen by "Crazy Rich Asians" director Jon M. Chu.

'It's something that I bonded, Lin and I on this, dreaming in our bedrooms when we were young about big things, things people thought were impossible," said Chu.

In Hollywood, they say timing is everything. No one could have envisioned this past pandemic filled year; but Chu seems to have made the perfect movie to help lift our spirits out of a dark time.

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"I think that going through a year of isolation, a movie about community, about love, about getting back up was something Washington Heights has to do. A lot. And that they are the ones that are going to guide us out of this darkness and into the light to celebrate together," said Chu. "I thought maybe this movie no one would ever see; I knew what we had, we had something special but the fact it's happening now, it feels... I surrender to the universe you just do your thing, I'll hang out and hang on."

"In the Heights" is filled with respectful references to movie musicals of the past. Chu says those films are in his DNA.

"I was raised on it, even my name, Jon M. Chu, I took it from 'Yankee Doodle Dandy', George M. Cohen," said Chu. "I saw that I said I'm gonna call myself Jon M."

"In the Heights" is in theaters now.

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