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Ansel Elgort to star as lead in Spielberg's West Side Story remake

Steven Spielberg is set to direct the film, which adapts the 1957 Broadway musical 

Ansel Elgort will play Tony in the upcoming remake of West Side Story.

Steven Spielberg has been working on the project for several years now and is set to direct the film, with producers having auditioned thousands of actors and dancers in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and Puerto Rico in recent months.

Penned by Pulitzer prize winner and Oscar nominee Tony Kushner, best known for Angels in America, the film will act as a remake of the 1957 Broadway musical, originally written by Arthur Laurents and Stephen Sondheim, with music by Leonard Bernstein.

Larry Kert played Tony in the original Broadway staging, while Richard Beymer played the role in the famous 1961 film adaptation. Directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins, the film went on to win 10 Academy Awards.

Inspired by William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, the story focuses on a romance which stretches across rival street gangs, between Tony, a member of a white American gang called the Jets, and Maria, associated with the Puerto Rican gang, the Sharks.

Filming for West Side Story is set to begin in the summer of 2019.

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