Steven Spielberg Praises the Late Stephen Sondheim’s Work on Original ‘West Side Story’
“West Side Story” is getting the Steven Spielberg treatment, and “Extra’s” Cheslie Kryst caught up with the director Monday at the NYC premiere.
Spielberg called the film “a dream come true for me,” and went on to praise the late Stephen Sondheim, who wrote the lyrics for the original 1957 Broadway production, made into a 1961 film classic.
Steven always wanted to recreate the classic Broadway show-turned-film, saying of the new version’s most famous cast member, “Rita Moreno is a bridge across several legacies, and now she’s playing Valentina in our movie and we’re lucky to have her… This is really something I heard at 10 years old. My mom and dad bought the album, the original cast album, and I listened to it… And we’ve been singing this at home since my kids were really little. It was just a matter of time before I kind of take a big, deep breath and see if I could get the rights.”
The premiere took place days after the death of the legendary Sondheim. Spielberg shared, “It was his first real job, ‘West Side Story.’ He was 24 years old… His lyrics obviously have stood the test of time, which is why we are here now in 2021… ‘West Side Story’ should be generational.”
“West Side Story” opens in theaters Christmas Day.