'West Side Story' 2021 Release Date, Cast, Trailer, Plot

West Side Story was one of the most-discussed movies during the Oscars—and the film has not even been released yet. The trailer for the Steven Spielberg remake of the classic film was released during the ceremony, giving viewers their first glimpse of the cast and the changes Spielberg has made to the plot.

When is West Side Story out?

The release date for the movie is December 10 in the U.S., when the movie will be showing only in cinemas.

Though initially set to be released in December 2020, COVID-19 pushed the release into this year. The film will now be released a few months after the 60th anniversary of the original 1961 movie.

Who is in the cast of West Side Story?

west side story 2021
A still from Steven Spielberg's 'West Side Story.' 20th Century Studios

Leading the cast as Tony and Maria, members of rival gangs in 1950s New York who fall in love, are Baby Driver's Ansel Elgort and newcomer Rachel Zegler. West Side Story is Zegler's first on-screen role, but she is also signed up to appear in DC movies sequel Shazam! Fury of the Gods.

In the original West Side Story, the Sharks and the Jets are Puerto Rican and white (though some have read them as specifically Polish) respectively. As revealed in the new trailer, Spielberg's Jets are Irish.

Among the actors playing those Jets are Dear Evan Hanson's Mike Faist, Sia muse and Music star Maddie Ziegler and Ben Cook, who appeared in the Broadway version of West Side Story. Among the cast playing the Sharks are So You Think You Can Dance contestant and The Prom star Ariana DeBose, Billy Elliot The Musical's David Alvarez and Puerto Rican singer Ana Isabelle.

Among the more established actors appearing in the movie are House of Cards' Corey Stoll as Police Lieutenant Schrank and Hamilton's Brian D'Arcy James as Police Sergeant Krupke.

Rita Moreno, who won an Oscar for the original movie, is also returning. She will play Valentina, a rethought version of the character of Doc, who owns the corner store where Tony works.

What is West Side Story about?

The current plot synopsis for the movie reads: "An adaptation of the 1957 musical, West Side Story explores forbidden love and the rivalry between the Jets and the Sharks, two teenage street gangs of different ethnic backgrounds."

In a Vanity Fair interview last year, Spielberg said of his new vision for the movie, "I really wanted to tell that Puerto Rican, Nuyorican experience of basically the migration to this country and the struggle to make a living, and to have children, and to battle against the obstacles of xenophobia and racial prejudice."

This new version is written by award-winning playwright Tony Kushner. Best known for Angels in America, he previously worked with Spielberg on Munich and Lincoln. He has hinted that he has returned to the original Arthur Laurents book for the script rather than the film version.

Is there a trailer for West Side Story?

The first trailer for the movie was released on April 25. Set to the film's version of "Somewhere," the promo gives viewers a glimpse of the director's first musical, but does not give us any dialog from the film.