Steven Spielberg’s reboot of West Side Story has found its Maria, and can we just say… a star is born?
In a scenario right out of your teenage dreams, 17-year-old Rachel Zegler, a Colombian-American student from new Jersey, has been ~Plucked From Obscurity!~ to star in the remake, opposite Ansel Elgort as Tony.
Zegler’s only previous brush with fame is a Twitter clip that went a bit viral in December, and you can see why:
Isn’t that a voice that’s just MADE for a Disney princess?
Try not to fall totally in love with the pure joy on her face as she effortlessly destroys the most iconic 30 seconds of ‘Shallow’ in an empty auditorium, and then chucks in a cheeky “Everybody!”
I love her. She’s already way more interesting than
Taron Sheridan Tye Egerton Ansel Elgort.
Plus, as Spielberg points out, the remake is making a point of casting actual Latinx actors as the Sharks and their friends.
Natalie Wood was charming and all (oh so charming) but she was born in California to Russian parents – so it’s great to see a young Latina woman playing one of the most iconic Latina characters in film history.
“West Side Story was the first musical I encountered with a Latina lead character,” Zegler said in a statement. “As a Colombian-American, I am humbled by the opportunity to play a role that means so much to the Hispanic community.”
I want only good things for this adorable young woman and her bloody huge voice.