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Star Wars: The Force Awakens gave, pardon my pun, a new hope for all of the Star Wars fans who were less than satisfied with the prequel trilogy. Luckily J.J. Abrams essentially obsessed with the production of The Force Awakens during its development, writing, and filming process. This labor of love paid off in a big way, with Episode VII being the most satisfying addition to the franchise since 1983’s Return Of The Jedi. Now it turns out that J.J. Abrams wore yet another hat in the production of The Force Awakens, as if director, producer, and writer wasn’t quite enough involvement.
In a recent interview, Lin-Manuel Miranda, who co-wrote and sang the song with J.J. Abrams, spoke to this process:
It’s J.J. and I singing on the track. It’s one level of surreal to write something for a movie, it’s another level to hear your voice in a Star Wars movie.
Seriously?! Now J.J. Abrams is a singer too? Is there anything that man can’t do?
Songwriter and Actor Lin-Manuel Miranda got involved in The Force Awakens after J.J. Abrams saw a performance of his highly successful Broadway musical Hamilton. After the performance, Miranda jokingly told Abrams that he’d love to write the music for the next cantina scene, which would eventually become Maz Kanata’s castle. Of course, Miranda didn’t know this and was referencing the famous scene and song from A New Hope. Much to the Broadway star’s surprise, J.J. Abrams ended up taking him up on that offer, and the two composed and sang the song together.
This is the latest of a slew of easter eggs that were revealed since The Force Awakens was released. Along with Daniel Craig and Kevin Smith’s turns as Stormtroopers, J.J. Abrams’ father’s role, and Carrie Fisher’s daughter Billie Lourd making a cameo, it turns out that J.J. Abrams essentially included whoever he wanted to in the Star Wars triumph.
Lin-Manuel Miranda first gained notoriety for writing and starring in the Tony Award winning musical In The Heights. His unique blend of soaring melodies and hip hop and rap verses created a genre Broadway audiences had never seen. His success has only continued since the opening of his newest musical, Hamilton. The hottest ticket on Broadway, Hamilton is almost impossible to get seats for and has a ticket lottery which daily shuts down a city block. J.J. Abrams clearly was impressed with Miranda’s work, which resulted in his involvement in The Force Awakens.
Check out Lin-Manuel Miranda’s thoughts on the opportunity of a lifetime in Entertainment Tonight’s video below.