It wouldn’t be much of an Oscars ceremony without a studio dropping a trailer or two. And Disney has just done that with the first trailer for Steven Spielberg’s “West Side Story.” Based on the Broadway musical and film adaptation of the same name, this new take aims to retell that story for a new generation and for a time that recognized the need to have more diversity and authentic representation on screen.
Set on the streets of New York City, like the Broadway show and film adaptation, Speilberg’s take explores the bitter rivalry between the Sharks and the Jets and the forbidden young love caught in between. Ansel Elgrot plays Tony, with Rachel Zegler taking the role of Maria, the two characters whose relationship will only cause tensions between the two gangs to boil. And for a bit of a throwback, Rita Moreno returns to the film that helped her win her first Academy Award.
Here’s a full description of the film from the press release:
Directed by Academy Award® winner Steven Spielberg, from a screenplay by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award® winner Tony Kushner, “West Side Story” tells the classic tale of fierce rivalries and young love in 1957 New York City. This reimagining of the beloved musical stars Ansel Elgort (Tony); Rachel Zegler (María); Ariana DeBose (Anita); David Alvarez (Bernardo); Mike Faist (Riff); Josh Andrés Rivera (Chino); Ana Isabelle (Rosalía); Corey Stoll (Lieutenant Schrank); Brian d’Arcy James (Officer Krupke); and Rita Moreno (as Valentina, who owns the corner store in which Tony works). Moreno – one of only three artists to be honored with Academy®, Emmy®, GRAMMY®, Tony®, and Peabody Awards – also serves as one of the film’s executive producers.
Bringing together the best of both Broadway and Hollywood, the film’s creative team includes Kushner, who also serves as an executive producer; Tony Award® winner Justin Peck, who choreographed the musical numbers in the film; renowned Los Angeles Philharmonic conductor and GRAMMY Award® winner Gustavo Dudamel, who helmed the recording of the iconic score; Academy Award®-nominated composer and conductor David Newman (“Anastasia”), who arranged the score; Tony Award®-winning composer Jeanine Tesori (“Fun Home,” “Thoroughly Modern Millie”), who supervised the cast on vocals; and Grammy®-nominated music supervisor Matt Sullivan (“Beauty and the Beast,” “Chicago”), who served as executive music producer for the film. The film is produced by Spielberg, Academy Award®-nominated producer Kristie Macosko Krieger and Tony Award®-winning producer Kevin McCollum. “West Side Story” has been adapted for the screen from the original 1957 Broadway show, with the book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and concept, direction, and choreography by Jerome Robbins.
“West Side Story” opens in theaters on December 10, 2021.