Rita Moreno isn’t done mamboing. The stage and screen legend will appear in Steven Spielberg’s new film version of West Side Story, a representative has confirmed.
Moreno, who earned an Oscar in 1962 for her performance as Anita in the original movie adaptation of the classic musical, will play Valentina, an expanded version of the musical’s Doc (the corner store owner). The EGOT winner will also serve as an executive producer on the project.
As previously reported, Ansel Elgort is set to star as Tony; no word yet on further casting. Also attached for the new take on Leonard Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim, and Arthur Laurents' musical are Angels in America scribe Tony Kushner as screenwriter and Carousel Tony winner Justin Peck as choreographer.
“Never in my wildest dreams did I see myself revisiting this seminal work,” said Moreno in a statement. “And to be asked by Steven Spielberg to participate is simply thrilling. Then to work together with the brilliant playwright, Tony Kushner—what a glorious stew! I am tingling!”
Earlier this month, it was reported that Moreno, who can currently be seen on Netflix's One Day at a Time reboot, would appear in another movie musical: In the Heights. The announcement, however, was quickly refuted.
Production on West Side Story is expected to begin in summer 2019, months before a new revival from Ivo van Hove is expected to arrive on Broadway.