West Side StorySteven Spielberg's next project? A remake of the Oscar-winning 1961 musical "West Side Story." The news came via a casting call that just went out looking for 15 to 25-year-olds for the four lead roles.

The 1961 film famously won 10 Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director (Robert Wise and choreographer Jerome Robbins), Best Supporting Actress (Rita Moreno), and Best Supporting Actor (George Chakiris).

However, the casting of Natalie Wood as Puerto Rican Maria never went over well, especially since her singing was dubbed by Marni Nixon. Fortunately, Spielberg's casting call specifies that Maria (as well as BFF Anita) should be played by Latinas.

And there will apparently be no dubbing this time. The casting call states, "Must be able to sing. Dance experience a plus." Given that the musical (which began as a Tony-winning Broadway show and is revived frequently) also features lots of dancing, that seems to be setting the bar a bit low.

Good luck finding an Anita as magnificent as Rita Moreno, who dazzled in dramatic scenes and in the show-stopping "America" number. Moreno (who currently stars on "One Day at at Time") is one of the few entertainers to hold an EGOT.

She and original stars Chakiris (Bernardo), Richard Beymer (Tony), and Russ Tamblyn (Riff) are all still around for cameos, by the way.

"Angels in America" playwright Tony Kushner is reworking the script. As he told Broadway.com recently, "I am not touching in any way the greatest score of a musical ever written [by Leonard Bernstein]. I love the [1961] film. Who doesn't? I am not changing the story, the setting, the period. It is still the Upper West Side in the late 1950s, but I'm exploring the story."

[Via EW]

West Side Story Movie Poster
West Side Story
1961
Based on 17 critics

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