First Look at West Side Story
The Sharks and the Jets will return to the big screen in Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story. 20th Century Fox, a subsidiary of Disney, released some of the first pictures of the film.
Check out the first look photos for West Side Story directed by Steven Spielberg in @VanityFair. See #WestSideStoryMovie in theaters this December. Read more: https://t.co/9nThw8jAgJ @Amblin pic.twitter.com/K6bHegPPkT
— 20th Century Studios (@20thcentury) March 16, 2020
According to an article by Vanity Fair, Spielberg dreamed of making West Side Story since he was very young. The soundtrack was the first piece of popular music allowed in his home by his family. As soon as he heard the 1957 musical version he was hooked. The film has been in his head since. “West Side Story has been that one haunting temptation that I have finally given in to.”
The 1961 film dominated the Oscars. It won 10 awards including Best Picture. West Side Story is a modern day Romeo and Juliet and between the story itself and the soundtrack the film was a massive hit. The themes are timeless. “This story is not only a product of its time, but that time has returned, and it’s returned with a kind of social fury,” Spielberg says. “I really wanted to tell that Puerto Rican, Nuyorican experience of basically the migration to this country and the struggle to make a living, and to have children, and to battle against the obstacles of xenophobia and racial prejudice.” (Vanity Fair)
The film stars Rachel Zegler as Maria and Ansel Elgort as Tony. Spielberg wanted authenticity in his actors. Hispanic parts are played exclusively by actors with Hispanic backgrounds. Ariana DeBose steps into the role of Anita. She performs one of the largest and most well-known numbers in the musical, “America”. Rita Moreno won best supporting actress for playing Anita in the 1961 film. She returns to Spielberg’s version as the age of 88 to play a different role.
The film is scheduled for release December 18th, 2020.
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