In the Heights' Lin-Manuel Miranda has said that he is "truly sorry" following criticism over the film's lack of Afro Latinx representation.
The musical has been dubbed an "electrifying theatrical experience" by reviewers but has also met criticism online regarding the lack of Afro Latinx actors in lead roles.
"Hot Take: you can love something AND still want/expect/deserve better.- signed an Afro-Latinx ready to properly see herself represented in entertainment," one viewer wrote.
Another commentator shared: "There's a CLEAR casting choice not to cast any dark skinned Afro-Latinxs that should be discussed.
"Dark skinned Afro-Latinx actors are put into boxes where they can't even audition for Latinx roles. I’m so proud of being Black, but that doesn't mean it doesn't hurt when we are literally written out of the narrative of our own communities' stories b/c we aren't in the room."
The film has also been criticised for leaving out a key plot point from the stage musical which involves Afro Latina character Nina's father being anti-Black towards Benny (Corey Hawkins).
Posting a statement to Twitter on Monday (June 14), Miranda shared his remorse and promised to "do better in [his] future projects".
"I started writing In the Heights because I didn't feel seen," Miranda wrote. "And over the past 20 years all I wanted was for us – ALL of us – to feel seen.
"I'm seeing the discussion around Afro-Latino representation in our film this weekend and it is clear that many in our dark-skinned Afro-Latino community don't feel sufficiently represented within it, particularly among the leading roles.
"I can hear the hurt and frustration over colourism, of felling still unseen in the feedback. I hear that without sufficient dark-skinned Afro-Latino representation, the work feels extractive of the community we wanted so much to represent with pride and joy. In trying to paint a mosaic of the community, we fell short. I'm truly sorry."
He added: "I'm learning from the feedback, I thank you for raising it, and I'm listening. I'm trying to hold space for both the incredible pride in the movie we made and be accountable for our shortcomings.
"Thanks for your honest feedback. I promise to do better in my future projects, and I'm dedicated to the learning and evolving we all have to do to make sure we are honouring our diverse and vibrant community."
The post follows Miranda previously admitting criticism that slavery is almost entirely whitewashed out of his hit stage show Hamilton "is "valid".
In the Heights is out now in US cinemas and on HBO Max in the US. It is released in UK cinemas on June 18.
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