71-year-old Steven Spielberg has a stacked few years ahead of him. Before he enters the world of DC comic books with "Blackhawk,” not to mention the fifth Indiana Jones movie, with a 75-year-old Harrison Ford to boot, oh, and his long-delayed, but now in pre-production, adaptation of David I. Kertzer's "The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara," he will release the Tony Kushner-penned remake of the classic musical “West Side Story.” Oh, boy. What a risk.
I wrote a few months back about this Spielberg remake:
“What does this tell me? It basically confirms that Spielberg has all but left the mini Howard Hawkes phase he had recently ("Lincoln," "Bridge of Spies," and "The Post") and is aiming for the masses again. He was supposed to start shooting the long-delayed "The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara" but that has been put on the back-burner, for now, as "Ready Player One" was chosen instead of it.”
Back to "West Side Story," Spielberg auditioned close to 30,000 people to find his four leads. Playing Maria will be 17-year old newcomer and New Jersey High School student Rachel Zegler and Ansel Elgort (Baby Driver) as Tony. Rounding out the principal Shark roles are Broadway veterans Ariana DeBose as Anita and David Alvarez as Bernardo. Theater performer Josh Andrés Rivera has been cast as Chino.