New ‘West Side Story’ trailer shows more of Steven Spielberg’s remake

West Side Story
Rachel Zegler and Ansel Elgort in 'West Side Story' (Image credit: 20th Century Studios)

Tonight, tonight (OK, it actually came out in the morning of Sept. 15), we have a brand new trailer for Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story, a remake of the classic 1961 film widely considered one of the greatest movie musicals of all time. This latest trailer for the film, which is slated for a Dec. 10 release, reveals more footage, particularly of newcomer Rachel Zegler’s Maria.

In case you didn’t know, West Side Story takes place in 1957 New York and follows rival street gangs the Jets and the Sharks. The Jets are white while the Sharks are made up of Puerto Rican immigrants. As young love blossoms between Tony and Maria, but it is put in danger by the rising hostility between the two gangs.

West Side Story was a Broadway play that featured music composed by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics from Stephen Sondheim and a story (inspired by William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet) by Arthur Laurents. The 1961 musical adaptation was then directed by Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise and went on to win 10 Oscars, including Best Picture.

Those are some big shoes to fill even for one of Hollywood’s greatest living directors. This is especially true as West Side Story is the first musical that Spielberg is directing. Helping him in this endeavor are frequent Spielberg collaborators Tony Kushner, who wrote the screenplay, and cinematographer Januusz Kaminski.

Also: 'West Side Story' - Can Steven Spielberg bring one of the greatest musicals to life?

The new trailer actually only features a brief snippet of one song from the musical, with Zegler singing the classic ballad “Tonight.” Instead we get much more of the general plot, some gorgeous looking musical numbers and a roll call for some of the key cast members. Watch the new West Side Story trailer below.

Among the faces you saw in the trailer were Rachel Zegler as Maria, Ansel Elgort as Tony, Ariana DeBose as Anita, David Alvarez as Bernando, Mike Faist as Riff and Rita Moreno, returning to the movie that scored her an Oscar in 1961, but playing a new character called Valentina.

Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story will be released on Dec. 10 exclusively in theaters, as Disney officially committed to a 45-day window for its remaining 2021 films following the success of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.

You can watch the original West Side Story on HBO Max.

Michael Balderston

Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Only Murders in the Building, Yellowstone, The Boys, Game of Thrones and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd.