Why Melissa Barrera was happy that ‘In The Heights’ failed at box office

“Scream 6” star Melissa Barrera shot to fame by starring in the musical “In The Heights,” but she’s actually thankful it didn’t do so hot at the box office.

“I am a firm believer in manifesting things into existence, and ‘In the Heights’ was one of those things,” the 32-year-old Mexican actress told People. “That’s the show where I belong — the first time that I ever saw people that looked like me on a Broadway stage.”

The movie was directed by John M. Chu and is an adaption of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s 2005 stage play.

While the movie only grossed $45 million at the box office against a $55 million budget, it opened in June 2021 amid the coronavirus pandemic.

It was when Barrera was in Vancouver during quarantine before filming her Netflix series “Keep Breathing” that she found out the movie tanked at the box office.

The Mexican actress currently starred in "Scream 6" as Samantha Carpenter.
The Mexican actress currently starred in “Scream 6” as Samantha Carpenter.
Philippe Bossé

She admitted that her isolation made taking in the box office numbers even harder for her.

“It really affected me,” she admitted. “[But] it also taught me a huge lesson — that I have no control over what happens when a movie comes out or when a show comes out.”

“The only thing I have control over is my experience and my feelings while making it and if I’m proud of it. I cannot let the stars not aligning, or whatever is happening with the world, take that away from me,” the “Vida” alum added.

Jenna Ortega and Melissa Barrera as sisters Tara and Samatha Carpenter in 2023's "Scream 6."
Jenna Ortega and Melissa Barrera as sisters Tara and Samatha Carpenter in 2023’s “Scream 6.”
Philippe Bossé

She also revealed that the experience helped her gain a new perspective on her acting career and it allowed her to keep expectations low.

“Imagine if [‘In the Heights’] had been a success and everything had been incredible and it made a billion dollars at the box office — and then my next movie flopped,” she said.

Barrera continued: “That would have been, I think, harder… I’m so grateful that my life has been exactly as it has been.”

Following her breakout performance in “In The Heights,” she scored the lead in 2022’s “Scream 5,” portraying Samantha Carpenter.

Barrera reprised the role in this year’s “Scream 6” and still defeated Ghostface in the newest installment of the slasher franchise.

She also spoke to the outlet about how her character evolved between the two films, saying: “In the fifth [movie], [the cast was] thrown into the ring, and it’s chaos. I’m very happy that we get to know Sam a little bit more in the sixth movie.”

“I was like, ‘She’s such an interesting character because she has so many demons that can be — if the writers and directors want — explored and lead to a very interesting challenge for me. In the sixth one, [they] take her in that direction. I feel very happy about that,” she said.

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