‘West Side Story’ First Reactions: ‘Top-Tier Spielberg,’ Rachel Zegler’s Star Shines Bright

Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of the beloved musical “West Side Story” finally began to screen for awards voters over the weekend ahead of its Christmas Day release.

First reactions are pouring out as the film’s official premiere at the El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles gets underway.

Early reactions are offering praise for Spielberg’s direction and high marks for Rachel Zegler as Maria in her film debut.The musical premiered mere days after the death of Stephen Sondheim at the age of 91.

Highest praise for the new film version came from the composer himself, who back in September dropped by “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” to talk about the most recent stage production of “Company” and, of course, Spielberg’s movie.“It’s really terrific,” Sondheim said of the film.

“Everybody go.

You’ll really have a good time.

And for those of you who know the show,

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