The director does it again.
Steven Spielberg is the most famous director in the world. His movies have made billions at the international box office, and he's known as one of the greatest entertainers to ever have lived. But he's never made a musical. In fact, musicals may not be the first thing that you even think of when the name "Spielberg" comes to mind.
I don't blame you. Spielberg is responsible for some of the most iconic science fiction, action, and war films ever made, including Jaws, Indiana Jones, and Jurassic Park.
Check out this CineFix - IGN Movies and TV video where he dishes on what brought him to make a musical and how it was such a different experience, and not so different experience, for the director.
Steven Spielberg Dishes on Making a Musical with West Side Story
From the time he was a kid, Spielberg always wanted to make a musical. His parents bought the original Broadway recording of West Side Story, and he fell in love with it. After becoming a filmmaker, Spielberg tried to make some musicals. He developed a few over the years, but they never panned out. Still, this was part of his true love and true dream. and he knew that someday he would try to create his own version of West Side Story.
Before that could happen, he actually needed a push out the door from a friend, George Lucas, who had the idea of making the opening of Temple of Doom a musical number. That let Spielberg channel Busby Berkeley and see the craft of the scene. He tried again with 1941's dance fight, which allowed him to understand how to weave action into place.
Still, it wasn't until the early 2000s before he thought he could get to West Side Story.
While making it, he had to form a close relationship with the choreographer (Justin Peck) because the shots could change the dancing, and the dancing could change the shots. He knew very little about choreography, so he had to lean on a partner in disciplines where he wasn't trained to perform. It was a really big step to rely on others. This humble collaboration is the center of what makes the movie work so well.
Making a musical is a massively collaborative effort, and Spielberg used this experience to remind himself that it takes a ton of talented people to get something to the big screen. It'll be interesting to see where this takes Spielberg for the next phase in his career. But it's fun to see the director's dream come alive.
Let us know what you think in the comments.
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January 16, 2022 at 2:29AM