Rita Moreno on appearing in the new West Side Story film: 'It's not a cameo – it's a real part'

The film is set to be released in December

Rita Moreno
Rita Moreno
© David Gordon
Chatting to Variety as her new documentary Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It is released, Moreno spilled more details about the West Side Story remake.

In the upcoming movie, Puerto Rican Moreno will play Valentina, a new character never-before-seen in the original stage show or the 1961 film. Valentina is said to be a reworked version of the character of "Doc", a New York store owner where leading man and love-struck teen Tony works.

Moreno played the role of Anita in the '60s classic, going on to win an Oscar for her performance 60 years ago. Ariana DeBose (The Prom) plays Anita this time around.

Walking on the set was "fabulous", Moreno says: "I'm a huge admirer of director Steven Spielberg – for everyone's edification, the script was written by Tony Kushner who wrote Angels in America. That's very important as he gave me the role of Valentina.

"It's not a cameo – it's a real part. To be there, when Steven is giving you directions and jumping around like a child with his finder saying "Rita look at this" – what a joy to work with this man."

She added: "The sets will blow you away. You'll really believe that you're in a barrio."

The film is currently set for a December 2021 release – we've created a full guide to everything you can expect from the feature.

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You can watch the Variety interview below: