petzipellepingo (petzipellepingo) wrote in westsidestory,

Book Recommendation1

West Side Story as cinema : the making and impact of an American masterpiece by Ernesto R. Acevedo-Munoz. Fascinating and very detailed look at how the film was put together, especially the use of color and symbolism throughout. Lots of great tidbits like not only was the Somewhere Ballet dropped from the film but there was serious discussion about dropping The Quintet which, IMO, would have been a tragedy. In a tidbit for insaneladybug, from page 110 :

In fact, Shrank was supposed to "song-talk" a few lines during the montage-something about "clean out the gangs" and "stop the action... tonight" but evidently, this idea was not pursued.

A great read, I literally read it from cover to cover last night without stopping. And once you've read it, you'll want to re-watch the film just to notice all the little details you might have missed in the past.

The only odd thing was no mention at all of Peter Gennaro, who choreographed the majority of the Sharks dance moves and was frozen out of the credits by Jerome Robbins.
Tags: 1961 film, books
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