“I feel pretty, oh so pretty…”
That’s just one of the many songs we remember from the groundbreaking musical film West Side Story that was released in 1962. Now more than 50 years later, Steven Spielberg has taken the reins in remaking the iconic film – and he is joined by a familiar face.
Rita Moreno, who won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in her role as Anita in the original, has been included in the cast of the remake, and will also be working on set as an executive producer.
The 86-year old actress will be portraying the store owner Valentina, who was originally Ned Glass’ Doc in the original.
In a statement sent to Rita’s publicist, Spielberg said that “”From our earliest discussions, we wanted to include her in our production. Her Anita is one of the greatest musical performances ever filmed, and a personal favorite of mine.”
Rita herself was ecstatic at the invitation, “Never in my wildest dreams did I see myself revisiting this seminal work. To be asked by Steven Spielberg to participate is simply thrilling!”
The original West Side Story in 1962 is a modern-day retelling of William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet”, pitting together rival gangs the Sharks and the Jets in New York’s Upper West Side.
The film won 10 Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Director under Robert Wise, and of course Rita’s accolade.
Story from AFP