‘Vivo,’ Lin-Manuel Miranda’s New Animated Ode to Miami

Lin-Manuel Miranda Vivo BeLatina Latinx
Photo courtesy of ScreenCrush.

Lin-Manuel Miranda has had his hands full over the past few months. Between promoting his new musical “In The Heights” and now an animated film, Miranda seems determined not to let us fall into boredom.

Titled “Vivo,” the new animated musical produced by Sony Pictures Animation, follows a unique kinkajou (also known as a jungle “honey bear,” voiced by Miranda), who spends his days playing music in a Havana plaza with his beloved owner Andres, NBC News reported.

After Andres receives a letter from the famous Marta Sandoval (Gloria Estefan) inviting his former partner to his farewell concert in Miami, the duo’s life takes an unexpected turn.

The film is directed by Kirk DeMicco and co-directed by Brandon Jeffords, from a screenplay by Quiara Alegria Hudes and DeMicco, and a story based on the original idea by Peter Barsocchini, with songs written by Miranda. 

The cast also features the voices of Ynairaly Simo, Zoe Saldana, Juan de Marcos Gonzalez, Michael Rooker, Brian Tyree Henry, and Nicole Byer.

The film, which is Sony Pictures Animation’s first musical, was first pitched to DreamWorks Animation in 2010 by Miranda but was canceled due to the company’s restructuring in 2015. It was later resurrected and fast-tracked by Sony Pictures Animation on December 14, 2016.

Originally, Sony Pictures Releasing, under the Columbia Pictures label, was to release it theatrically in the U.S., but it is set to be released digitally on Netflix in mid-2021, after several delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The family film was initially scheduled to be released in theaters on June 4. But Sony Pictures, the studio that initially backed “Vivo,” has transferred the project to Netflix. It’s unclear when it will premiere on the streaming service.

“Bringing Vivo to life has been an incredible artistic journey. I couldn’t ask for better creative partners than Kirk, Quiara, Alex, and the entire team at Sony Animation,” Miranda said. “I’m so excited Vivo will have a home at Netflix, where kids of all ages will be able to enjoy the film’s songs and adventures again and again.”