Skip to content
Hamilton the Musical, Hamilton, Lin-Manual Miranda, In the Heights, Broadway Musical, Hamilton: The Revolution

Please Note: Once you press play it will take a few seconds for the episode to start playing.

What “Hamilton the Musical” Can Teach Indie Filmmakers

If you have been living underneath a rock you probably haven’t heard of the Broadway smash-hit HamiltonFor the rest of you, this remarkable musical by Lin-Manual Miranda has changed not only Broadway but storytelling as well.

I know that is a bold statement but let me ask you, how many other new Broadway musicals have you heard about in the past 5-10 years? How many have crept into pop culture? How many have changed the game like Hamilton? Not many.

So what can indie filmmakers learn from a musical on Broadway? Here are a few lessons I learned from Lin-Manual Miranda’s masterpiece.

Be Brave and Take Artistic Risks

When Lin-Manual Miranda told President Obama he would be rapping about Alexander Hamilton at a White House dinner, President Obama said:

“Good luck with that.”

Because seriously who in their right mind would rap about Alexander Hamilton. Who would write an entire musical about boring American history? Lin-Manual saw something that the rest of us didn’t. He was brave enough to stick to his vision and bring Hamilton to life.

As an artist, you should challenge your audience. You should push the envelope. If no one around you understands what you are trying to do then you might be on to something. Lin-Manual took a crazy idea and made it his own and in turn, made the world a bit richer than before.

Needless to say, Mr. and Mrs. Obama were blown away by his performance. Check it out below:

Listen to Your GUT!

One of the great plagues of artists and filmmakers in doubt. They let that 7 pounds of gray matter in their heads determine how they should proceed with a purely emotional and artistic endeavor. Art, stories, and music are not created in the brain, they are created by listening to your gut.

Art comes from “the gut.” You need to feel the story in your gut, in your soul. Does it ring true to your ear? Once the story is out then your brain comes in to help with structure, casting, marketing, production, etc. Listen to yourself!

I can’t tell you how many times I  wished I would’ve listened to my gut and not my head. Listen to yourself! Trust yourself.

Watch this amazing documentary on the creation of Hamilton the Musical and see how Lin-Manual created his crazy art:

Challenge Yourself

Why are we here on this earth? To work a 40 hour week, pay rent and wait to die? No! You are a filmmaker. A very powerful artist using probably the most influential artistic medium known to man. As a filmmaker you need to challenge yourself, this is the only way you grow as an artist.

Lin-Manual was on the top of the world with his hit Broadway musical In the Heights. But he didn’t standstill. He decided to challenge himself so he wrote Hamilton, which took him years to complete.

Even after the success of Hamilton, Lin-Manual took on a new challenge, composing songs for the Disney Animated Hit Moana. The man does not sleep and neither should you. I challenge you to get this song out of your head.

If you study a filmmaker like James Cameron, his films get bigger and more challenging every time out. This is a man who never has to work a day in his life again. He has created the #1 and the #2 biggest box office films of all time.

After Titanic, he literally needed to take 8 years off to figure out what he could do next to challenge himself again. So what did he come up with Avatar. Now he’s planning four Avatar films back to back. You need to figure out how to do this for your own journey.

Challenge yourself guys! Take a listen to this week’s episode. I hope it inspires you. Also if you haven’t had a chance yet to see Hamilton, do yourself a favor and get tickets when it comes to your city. It’ll change your life =)

Right-click here to download the MP3
Download on iTunes Direct
Watch on IFH YouTube Channel



  1. Rise of the Filmtrepreneur®: How to Turn Your Indie Film into a Moneymaking Business
  2. Rise of the Filmtrepreneur®: FREE AUDIOBOOK
  3. Indie Film Hustle TV (Streaming Real-World Film Education)
  4. – Closed Caption Your Indie Film ($10 off Your First Order)
  5. Alex Ferrari’s Shooting for the Mob (Based on the Incredible True Filmmaking Story)
  6. – (IFH Discount SAVE $50)


  1. Indie Film Hustle TV (Streaming Real-World Film Education)
  2. Hollywood Film School: Filmmaking & TV Directing Masterclass
  3. Filmmaker in a Box – Learn How to Make an Indie Film – 18 Hours+ of Lessons 
  4. Storytelling Blueprint: Hero’s Two Journeys
  5. The Dialogue Series: 38 hours of Lessons from Top Hollywood Screenwriters


  1. Filmtrepreneur® Podcast
  2. Bulletproof Screenwriting® Podcast
  3. Six Secrets to getting into Film Festivals for FREE!
  4. (Download Your FREE Filmmaking Audio Book)

Action Items:

If you liked What “Hamilton the Musical” Can Teach Indie Filmmakers, then you’ll love:
Why Filmmakers are Always So Damn Broke & What They Can Do to Change It
filmmaker, indie filmmaker, filmmakers, indie film hustle, alex ferrari, filmmaking podcast

Enjoyed What”Hamilton the Musical” Can Teach Indie Filmmakers? Please share it in your social networks (FacebookTwitter, email etc) by using social media buttons at the side or bottom of the blog. Or post to your blog and anywhere else you feel it would be a good fit. Thanks.

I welcome thoughts and remarks on ANY of the content above in the comments section below…

Get Social with Indie Film Hustle:
Facebook: Indie Film Hustle

Twitter: @indiefilmhustle
Instagram: @ifilmhustle

Podcasts You Should Be Listening To:
Podcast: Indie Film Hustle Podcast
Podcast: Bulletproof Screenwriting Podcast
Podcast: The Filmtrepreneur® Podcast

Stuff You Need in Your Life:
IFHTV: Indie Film Hustle TV
Rise of the Filmtrepreneur®: How to Turn Your Indie Film into a Moneymaking Business
Book: Shooting for the Mob (Based on the Incredible True Filmmaking Story)

Gain Access to IFHTV Here

Please note some of the links below are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase or use a service. Understand that I have experience with all of these services, products, and companies, and I recommend them because they’re extremely helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions I earn if you decide to buy something.


Facebook Comments


Do You Want to Download the Indie Film Sound FX Library?


This free (and essential) package will give you
2000+ sound fx to help you with your
indie film projects.

No thanks, I don't want to free sound fx

Did you get your

FREE Audiobook?

Make money with your film!