2021 is a year chock-full of movie musicals, a number of which coming from the brilliant mind of Lin-Manuel Miranda. The Hamilton multihyphenate has stepped behind the camera for the movie adaptation of Tick, Tick... Boom!, which will also mark his directorial debut. And the full trailer features Andrew Garfield belting out songs written by RENT's Jonathan Larson.
Late composer Jonathan Larson's name is synonymous with his work on the musical RENT, especially when he famously passed away ahead of its Broadway opening. But he also wrote an autobiographical song cycle titled Tick, Tick... Boom!, with Andrew Garfield tasked with playing Larson in Lin-Manuel Miranda's movie. And the first trailer (seen above) is pretty damn stunning.
The above trailer opens by showing the two sides of Tick, Tick... Boom!'s protagonist. While Jonathan Larson is a talented songwriter, he's also got a survival job at a diner. The writing process is a difficult one, and is seemingly informed by Jonathan's relationships, turning 30, and the rise of the AIDS epidemic.
While stage musical Tick, Tick...Boom! features a cast of just three people, Lin-Manuel Miranda assembled some killer talent to occupy the world of his directorial debut. The trailer features original In the Heights star Robin De Jesus (The Boys in the Band) playing Jonathan's best friend Michael. X-Men's Alexandra Shipp plays Jonathan's girlfriend Susan, while Vanessa Hudgens stars as an actress named Karessa who works with him. The cast list also includes other familiar names like Judith Light and Bradley Whitford, with the latter actor actually playing Stephen Sondheim.
From these clips it really looks like Lin-Manuel Miranda captured New York City at the end of the millennium. And while it seems like Tick, Tick... Boom! will be rooted in realism, the trailer also features moments of movie magic that elevate the footage. Jonathan sees music staffs appear at the bottom of a pool, there's dancing on walls, and we watch as the walls of Jonathan's diner fade away in front of him.
While Tick, Tick... Boom! marks a milestone in Lin-Manuel Miranda's career, he's a perfect choice to bring the lesser known Jonathan Larson musical to life on the screen. On top of his work on projects like In the Heights and Hamilton, he's also a massive fan of musical theater himself. And he knows this piece particularly well, as he starred as Jonathan in a 2014 production opposite Leslie Odom Jr. and Karen Olivo.
The generations of RENT fans out there will no doubt enjoy the musical numbers in Tick, Tick... Boom!, with a few briefly featured in this trailer. The emotional final "Louder than Words" is heard as we're introduced to the world Lin-Manuel Miranda is creating for the screen. And the introduction of the opening number "30/90" can be heard at the start of the trailer. Andrew Garfield's version of "30/90" was actually released in its entirety on streaming platforms, so you can hear him belt out the tune alongside Vanessa Hudgens.
Tick,Tick... Boom! will hit theaters for a limited run on November 12th, before arriving on Netflix November 19th. In the meantime, check out the 2021 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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