Ansel Elgort has a lot going on right now. Not only does his film, The Goldfinch, hit theaters this Friday (September 13), but fans have also been awaiting more details about Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story remake. Unfortunately, the remake isn’t coming out until December 2020. And while information about the movie is slim, the actor did reveal that he cried upon hearing that he was cast as Tony.
Elgort spilled all about being cast in the musical during an appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on Tuesday (September 10). “I got a phone call, and I get a lot of unknown phone calls because I’ve had the same number since sixth grade,” he said. ” … And I get this unknown number. For some reason, I answer it, and then they say, ‘Hi Ansel, Steven Spielberg wants to talk to you.’ And I had already been auditioning a lot at the time and I had been fighting for this role, and it was Steven.”
Despite Spielberg calling him personally, Elgort still wasn’t confident he got the part — especially since his tone suggested otherwise. Still, the Fault in Our Stars actor was grateful to be speaking with the legendary filmmaker at all. “His tone sort of implied that maybe I wasn’t going to get the role, but I was still so happy that he would call me and tell me I didn’t get it,” Elgort said. “… And then it turned into that I did get it.”
As an enormous musical theater fan, Elgort was thrilled over the news. “I was so happy and I couldn’t tell anyone,” he said. “But I called my mom and dad and cried a little bit and it was great.” Even better is the fact that this actually isn’t Elgort’s first time acting in West Side Story. “When I was 12 years old, I was in West Side Story at theater camp,” he told the late-night host.
Despite being a seasoned West Side Story veteran, though, Elgort still can’t believe he gets to work with Spielberg directly, who’s one of the most iconic, well-known figures in recent film history. “It’s unbelievable,” he said. “I am pinching myself constantly whenever I’m talking to him and he’s directing me.” What a dream come true!