Will Steven Spielberg’s ‘West Side Story’ Reach a Streaming Service?
Musical fans are delighted that West Side Story is approaching the big screen. But the kicker is that Steven Spielberg directed the new movie. Once the trailer dropped in April 2021, the hype for the film skyrocketed; viewers watched the Manhattan streets light up, and familiar Hollywood faces fill the trailer.
Many are ready to see the flick in theaters on Dec. 10, 2021. But after the pandemic normalized movie-streaming, some viewers may prefer to watch the adaptation from home.
Spielberg is one of the most successful directors
After his horror flick Jaws became a smash hit, Spielberg’s success exploded through his future projects. At first, the filmmaker was known for his thriller or sci-fi movies, including Close Encounters With The Third Kind, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, War of the Worlds, and Jurassic Park.
After he rose to fame, Spielberg contributed to dramatic and complex projects. Critics applauded Lincoln for the intricate attention to scenic details; Saving Private Ryan received several accolades for its realism, and audiences appreciated the depth in The Color Purple.
Spielberg also tried his hand at action movies, and he received widespread acclaim. Indiana Jones continues to be one of the most celebrated films. The flick also inspired thrill rides at a few Walt Disney Company theme parks.
Where ‘West Side Story’ could stream
Although there has not been any official statement regarding a streamed release, the film will premiere in theaters. However, 20th Century Studios, a subsidiary of Disney, developed the production.
When the entertainment giant acquired the studio, Disney announced it would stream 20th Century’s original films. This indicates that West Side Story could stream on any Disney-owned platform. While Disney+ may not be the musical’s future home, Hulu is a prospect.
The question that remains is, when will the musical reach a streaming service? It is not yet clear how long the theatrical release must last before West Side Story can stream.
But here’s the twist: Spielberg’s production company, Amblin Partners, signed a deal with Netflix in 2021. According to CNN, the filmmaker expressed his appreciation for the new partnership. Regarding the deal, the filmmaker said, “it was abundantly clear that we had an amazing opportunity to tell new stories together and reach audiences in new ways.”
The Broadway play will not reopen
In August 2021, Broadway fans learned that the revival of West Side Story would not return to Broadway. According to Variety, Kate Horton, the musical’s producer, explained why the 2020 revival would not reopen in 2021.
“It is with great regret that we are announcing today that the 2020 Broadway revival of West Side Story will not reopen,” Horton revealed. “This difficult and painful decision comes after we have explored every possible path to a successful run, and unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, reopening is not a practical proposition. We thank all the brilliant, creative artists who brought West Side Story to life at the Broadway Theatre, even for so brief a time, especially the extraordinary acting company, 33 of whom made their Broadway debuts in this production.”
The production held previews before the pandemic forced theaters to close. This version of West Side Story included a modern twist on the Romeo and Juliet-inspired romance.