Jimmy Smits, Dascha Polanco, Stephanie Beatriz & More Join Cast of ‘In the Heights’ Movie

Lead Photo: Art by Alan Lopez for Remezcla
Art by Alan Lopez for Remezcla
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Impresario Lin-Manuel Miranda has been on a roll since announcing the quartet of actors who will lead the upcoming adaptation of In the Heights. Anthony Ramos will play bodega owner Usnavi, joined by Corey Hawkins, Leslie Grace and Melissa Barrera.

Since then, Miranda has gone on a blitz on Twitter, dropping cast member names throughout the week. His first blast announced that Cuban-American actress Olga Merediz is playing Abuela Claudia, the neighborhood grandmother who raised Usnavi from birth. Merediz played the character throughout In the Heights’ Broadway run, winning a Tony in the process. Nuyorican newcomer Gregory Diaz IV will play Sonny, Usnavi’s wisecraking cousin. Jimmy Smits was also announced as taking on the role of Kevin Rosario, the overprotective father of In the Heights’ lead female character, Nina (set to be played by Dominican-American singer Leslie Grace.)

Just this morning, Miranda dropped another trio of casting announcements with the news that Panamanian-American Broadway star Daphne Rubin-Vega – best known for originating the role of Mimi in the Broadway musical Rent – will play neighborhood salon owner Daniella. Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Stephanie Beatriz is set to take on the role of Carla, Daniella’s best friend, while Dominican-American actress Dascha Polanco (of Orange is the New Black) will play Cuca.

Filming is set to start this summer for a summer 2020 release, and it can’t come soon enough. The sheer amount of talent brought on for this movie is immense with a mix of newcomers, Broadway veterans, and television stars. This adaptation of In the Heights is prepped to be one of the most anticipated films to come out next year.


In the Heights arrives Summer 2020.