Steven Spielberg is eyeing a potential directing project in the form of a big screen remake of Robert Wise’s West Side Story, Deadline reports. The original film was released in 1961 and earned ten Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
Before it arrived on the big screen, West Side Story was a hit on Broadway, opening in 1957 with a book by Arthur Laurents and music by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim. Itself a reinterpreation of William Shakespeare’s “Romeo & Juliet,” West Side Story follows two star-crossed lovers in the form of Tony and Maria (played on the screen by Richard Beymer and Natalie Wood).
Spielberg last directed 2012’s Lincoln with plans to move on to both Robopocalypse and American Sniper. The former project is now on indefinite hold while the second, set to star Bradley Cooper, was taken over by Clint Eastwood.
Spielberg’s involvement with West Side Story is nascent and the outlet notes that litte has happened outside of the legendary helmer expressing interest. It’s also unclear exactly what approach to the material Spielberg may take. His only directorial remake is 2005’s War of the Worlds, which updated the story’s setting to present day. He also announced plans for remake of Henry Koster’s Harvey in 2009, but the project did not manage to find the right headliner and failed to move forward.