The Steven Spielberg film remake of West Side Story is currently seeking its leading players, according to a casting notice for the roles of Maria, Tony, Bernardo, and Anita issued by casting director Cindy Tolan. As previously reported, the movie will feature a script by Pulitzer Prize-winning Angels in America playwright Tony Kushner, with whom the Spielberg collaborated with on the Academy Award-winning Lincoln.
The casting notice specifies that the Latinx roles must speak Spanish. A background in dance is also encouraged.
A remake of the 1961 movie, which was itself based on the Broadway musical of the same name, has been a dream of the Oscar-winning filmmaker's for decades. Spielberg, Kevin McCollum, and Kristie Macosko Krieger are all attached as producers according to the casting call. A production start date is not listed.
The original West Side Story film won ten Academy Awards, including Best Picture. The movie is directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins, and features music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and a screenplay by Ernest Lehman based on the libretto by Arthur Laurents.
Kushner also penned the script for the film adaptation of August Wilson's Pulitzer-winning drama Fences. He won Tony Awards for both parts of Angels in America, which will be revived on Broadway beginning February 23.