7.5/10
93,757
389 user 135 critic

West Side Story (1961)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Musical | 23 December 1961 (Japan)
Trailer
0:31 | Trailer
Two youngsters from rival New York City gangs fall in love, but tensions between their respective friends build toward tragedy.

Writers:

Ernest Lehman (screenplay), Arthur Laurents (book) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
1,061 ( 219)
Won 10 Oscars. Another 18 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Natalie Wood ... Maria
Richard Beymer ... Tony
Russ Tamblyn ... Riff
Rita Moreno ... Anita
George Chakiris ... Bernardo
Simon Oakland ... Schrank
Ned Glass ... Doc
William Bramley William Bramley ... Krupke
Tucker Smith ... Ice
Tony Mordente ... Action
David Winters ... A-rab
Eliot Feld ... Baby John
Bert Michaels ... Snowboy
David Bean David Bean ... Tiger
Robert Banas Robert Banas ... Joyboy
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Storyline

West Side Story is the award-winning adaptation of the classic romantic tragedy "Romeo and Juliet". The feuding families become two warring New York City gangs--the white Jets led by Riff and the Latino Sharks, led by Bernardo. Their hatred escalates to a point where neither can coexist with any form of understanding. But when Riff's best friend (and former Jet) Tony and Bernardo's younger sister Maria meet at a dance, no one can do anything to stop their love. Maria and Tony begin meeting in secret, planning to run away. Then the Sharks and Jets plan a rumble under the highway--whoever wins gains control of the streets. Maria sends Tony to stop it, hoping it can end the violence. It goes terribly wrong, and before the lovers know what's happened, tragedy strikes and doesn't stop until the climactic and heartbreaking ending. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Screen Achieves One of the Great Entertainments in the History of Motion Pictures See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The original stage version of Maria's song "I Feel Pretty" included the lyrics "I feel pretty and witty and bright / And I pity / Any girl who isn't me tonight." In the film this night scene was changed to the daytime, and presumably for this reason, the rhyming words "bright" and "tonight" were changed to "gay" and "today." See more »

Goofs

During the "Tonight Quintet" when Richard Beymer is singing his part in the doorway of Doc's Candy Store... you can clearly see the back part of the store is missing the tables, chairs and the pinball machine that were there during the war council scene. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[the Jets dance across the streets of New York, eventually coming to a playground where they toss around a basketball. The ball is intercepted by Bernardo, leader of the Sharks]
Riff: [snaps fingers at Bernardo] Come on.
[Bernardo drops the ball, Riff picks it up]
Riff: Beat it.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits; a stylized, tinted aerial still of Manhattan is shown as the overture plays. The background changes color as the themes change throughout the overture. As the overture ends, the tinting is blue, the title appears, and the shot segues to aerial photography of Manhattan streets and landmarks. See more »

Alternate Versions

In 2011, as part of the 50th Anniversary Blu-Ray release, a new score, closer to the original theatrical version, was orchestrated by the Leonard Bernstein Estate. It was performed live by the Los Angeles and New York Philharmonics at screenings with the original score excised. (The original vocals were retained.) The New York performance was at Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall, built atop the movie's filming locations. See more »

Connections

Referenced in This Is Us: Unhinged (2019) See more »

Soundtracks

Jet Song
(1957) (uncredited)
Music by Leonard Bernstein
Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Performed by Tucker Smith, Russ Tamblyn, Bert Michaels, and The Jets
See more »

User Reviews

special
4 January 2018 | by KirpianuscusSee all my reviews

It is strange to say why. because it is the musical "par excellence". many of its songs are well known by young public before they see the film. because each character has its perfect actor. because it is one of the most inspired adaptations of "Romeo and Juliet". because it is...magic. and one of motifs to admire scene by scene this film about the essence of youth, love and life. a film absolutely special. whithout know why. without define the motif for who, after its end, you desire see again. maybe, for the most inspired Mercutio of Russ Tamblyn., for lovely Maria of Natalie Wood ( and Marni Nixon), for Richard Beymer and, off course, George Chalkiris. so, special. and could be enough .


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

23 December 1961 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

West Side Story See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$207,145, 24 June 2018

Gross USA:

$44,055,492

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$44,061,777
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (35 mm magnetic prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (Westrex Recording System) (70 mm prints)| Mono (35 mm optical prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

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