'War Horse' premiere with Steven Spielberg

NEW YORK CITY - December 4, 2011

"This movie is about heart. This movie is also about how the heart of an animal can heal so many wounded hearts," Spielberg said.

Adapted from a book of the same name, Spielberg says when he saw the stage production in London, he was sold.

"It was a passion of mine. When I saw it performed on the boards as they say, I fell in love with the story; I fell in love with what it could be as a film," Spielberg said.

It's also an ode to his daughter Destry, the equestrienne of the family

'War Horse' follows a young man named Albert and his horse, Joey, and their story of heartbreak when World War I breaks out.

"You see the war from the horse's point of view in the film," actor Patrick Kennedy said. "It's a very Spielbergian way of looking at things, the outsider's point of view."

Spielberg cast many of Britain's newcomers including lead actor Jeremy Irvine.

"It's so not real in my head yet. I don't know when it will sink in," Irvine said.

There are aspects of the film that are also a first for Spielberg.

"I shot it on film, but I actually, for the first time, cut a film digitally. A big change, I guess you can teach this old dog a trick or two," Spielberg said.

Actress Emily Watson is a fan of the film as a whole.

"It is a beautiful, old-fashioned piece, cinematic with a capital C," Watson said.

Spielberg left us with one last description of his latest motion picture.

"It's really about hope and courage and getting home," the award-winning director told us.

'War Horse' opens in theatres on Christmas Day.

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