Production Wraps on Spielberg’s West Side Story
20th Century Fox has revealed that production has officially wrapped on director Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story remake. The director penned a heartfelt letter about the film’s production which you can read below along with new photos from the film!
“It’s 12:01 AM, September 28, 2019, at Steiner Studios in Brookyn Navy Yards in the great city of New York, and we’ve just concluded filming our version of West Side Story. This has been a journey without precedent: AA joyful stunningly moving, endlessly surprising encounter with the story and score of one of hte world’s greatest musicals. My brilliantly talented, fiercely committed, generous and apparently inexhaustible cast and crew of hundreds have given our film everything they’ve got, and already I can say that the film we’ll be releasing on December 2, 2020 owes everything to them as does its immensely grateful director.’
“And while i’m on the subject of gratitude: One every day of the past four years during which we’ve been preparing, casting, imagining West Side Story, I an my team, cast and crew have been walking in the footsteps of our giants: Leonard Bernstein, Arthur Laurents, Jerome Robbins and Stephen Sondheim. For the light they’ve shed on the world, for Stephen Sondheim’s insight, guidance and support, and for the openhearted support of the Bernstein, Laurents and Robbins estates, I owe more than I can possibly express.’
“We’ve filmed Weest Side Story all over New York, from Flatbush to Fort Tryon Park. The city lent us its beauty and its energy, and we drew deeply upon its grand, multicultural, multifaceted spirit. In addition, we spent three extraordinary weeks filming in Paterson, New Jersey. To the people of New York and Paterson, thanks not only for putting up with our trailers, tents, cranes, and mid-street dance sequences; from the bottom of my hearts, thanks for the warm welcomes we encountered everywhere, from pedestrians and policemen and neighborhoods and kids. We couldn’t have made our musical without you.”
Ansel Elgort and Rachel Zegler star in the film alongside Ariana DeBose, Ana Isabelle, Corey Stoll, Brian d’Arcy James, Curtiss Cook and Academy Award-winner Rita Moreno, who plays Valentina and also serves as one of the film’s Executive Producers.
An adaptation of the original Broadway musical, West Side Story explores young love and tensions between rival gangs the Jets and the Sharks on the streets of 1957 New York. Buy the original film now on Amazon.
West Side Story is produced and directed by Steven Spielberg from a script by Academy Award®-nominated screenwriter and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tony Kushner. The film has been adapted for the screen from the original 1957 Broadway musical, which was written by Arthur Laurents with music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and concept, direction and choreography by Jerome Robbins. Tony Award-winner Justin Peck will choreograph the musical numbers in the film. Also leading the production are Tony Award®-winning producer Kevin McCollum and Academy Award®-nominated producer Kristie Macosko Krieger.
The film’s music team includes renowned conductor Gustavo Dudamel, who will helm the recording of Bernstein’s iconic score; Academy Award-nominated composer and conductor David Newman (Anastasia) who will be arranging the score for the new adaptation; Tony Award-winning composer Jeanine Tesori (Broadway’s Fun Home and Thoroughly Modern Millie), who will be working with the cast on vocals; and Grammy-nominated music supervisor Matt Sullivan (Beauty and the Beast, Chicago), who will serve as executive music producer for the film.
West Side Story will be released by The Walt Disney Studios in the US on December 18, 2020.