The Puerto Rican star who first stole our hearts by singing “America” is opening up about her role in Steven Spielberg’s new remake of “West Side Story.” Rita Moreno said that although the last movie version did many things “very right” there were still things “wrong with it” including the absence of Puerto Rican actors in a story surrounding Puerto Rican characters.

“That’s what they were trying to fix and ameliorate," she told Vanity Fair. "And I think they have done an incredible job.”

What better way to understand the Puerto Rican experience than to work in tandem with Puerto Rican creators? Spielberg made Moreno an executive producer on the film and valued her input.

“I really wanted to tell that Puerto Rican, Nuyorican experience of basically the migration to this country and the struggle to make a living and to have children, and to battle against the obstacles of xenophobia and racial prejudice,” he said.

Moreno is also starring in the film, although she won’t be reprising her iconic role of Anita. Instead, she will be playing the new role of Valentina.

Spielberg wanted to cast only actors of Hispanic descent and said he believes the cast took their role in representing a unique experience “seriously.”

“They brought themselves, and everything they believe and everything about them—they brought that to the work,” he said.

Moreno won an Oscar for best supporting actress for her role in the original film, and her representation as a Latina woman inspired many young people including some of the cast.

“I grew up watching the film and I just fell in love with the woman in the purple dress,” said Ariana DeBose, who will be taking over Moreno’s role as Anita. “Even before I really understood what the story was about, I knew that I loved what she was doing. As I grew up, I discovered who she was and her name was Rita Moreno, and she looked like me.”

“West Side Story” is set for release in Dec. 18, 2020.

The West Side Story remake will hit theaters in 2020. Ramona Rosales/20th Century Films