Cast for 'West Side Story' reboot rounds out with some wonderful talent

‘West Side Story’ Remake Casts Newcomer as Maria

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She will play Maria opposite Ansel Elgort, who will play Tony, according to Variety.

Inspired by William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, West Side Story revolves around the rivalry between young street gangs, the Jets and the Sharks.

"As a Colombian-American woman growing up in this day and age, strong roles like Maria are so important".

Zegler answered an open call for audition tapes that was placed in January of previous year, following an announcement from the production that they would be exploring alternative casting avenues within the Puerto Rican and Latinx communities to find the right actors for the film.

Zegler may be a newcomer, but she already has a few famous fans - some of whom tweeted their congratulations Monday after the news became public.

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Originally a 1957 Broadway musical scored by Leonard Bernstein, West Side Story sets the love story of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet against a backdrop of warring gangs in 1950s NY. Moreno won an Oscar for playing Anita in the 1961 film, and is an executive producer for Spielberg's remake.

Rounding out the cast are Broadway stars Ariana DeBose as Anita, David Alvarez as Bernardo and Josh Andrés Rivera as Chino. She was one of 30,000 hopefuls to audition for the film.

She answered an open casting call for West Side Story, with a video in which she sang Tonight and Me Siento Hermosa from the musical.

"When we began this process a year ago, we announced that we would cast the roles of Maria, Anita, Bernardo, Chino and the Sharks with Latina and Latino actors", Spielberg was quoted as saying in USA media. They join the previously-announced Rita Moreno, who is playing Valentina, an expanded and re-conceived version of corner store owner Doc.

The up-and-coming star maintains a popular YouTube channel where she posts covers of songs and answers questions about everything from her daily life to her impressive vocal range. Needless to say, she is extremely talented and it's easy to see how she earned the part.

Filming is due to start in the summer of 2019.

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