Director reveals why Julie Andrews won’t appear in Mary Poppins Returns
The upcoming Mary Poppins Returns will see Dick Van Dyke from the original film appear in the sequel, but the original magical nanny, Julie Andrews, won’t be making an appearance. Though Andrews has given her endorsement to the sequel, director Rob Marshall revealed her exact reasoning to EW for not wanting to appear.
“Julie was incredibly gracious, and we talked about it in a very general way but she made it clear right up front. She said, ‘This is Emily’s show, and I really want it to be Emily’s show. I don’t want it to be, “Oh, here comes that Mary Poppins.” I don’t want that. I really want her to take this and run with it, because she will be brilliant.’”
The cast of Mary Poppins Returns includes Golden Globe winner Emily Blunt (The Girl on the Train, Into the Woods), Emmy, Grammy and Tony Award winner Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton, Moana), Ben Whishaw (SPECTRE), Emily Mortimer (Hugo) and Julie Walters (Harry Potter films), with Colin Firth (The King’s Speech) and Meryl Streep (Florence Foster Jenkins). Dick Van Dyke plays Mr. Dawes Jr., the chairman of Fidelity Fiduciary Bank, which is now run by William Weatherall Wilkins (Firth), and Angela Lansbury will play the Balloon Lady, a character from PL Travers’ original children’s books.
Directed and produced by Oscar nominee, Emmy and DGA Award winner Rob Marshall (Into the Woods, Chicago), Mary Poppins Returns also introduces three new Banks children, played by Pixie Davies (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children), Nathanael Saleh (Game of Thrones) and newcomer Joel Dawson.
Set in 1930s depression-era London (the time period of the original novels), Mary Poppins Returnsis drawn from the wealth of material in PL Travers’ additional seven books. In the story, Michael (Whishaw) and Jane (Mortimer) are now grown up, with Michael, his three children and their housekeeper, Ellen (Walters), living on Cherry Tree Lane. After Michael suffers a personal loss, the enigmatic nanny Mary Poppins (Blunt) re-enters the lives of the Banks family, and, along with the optimistic street lamplighter Jack (Miranda), uses her unique magical skills to help the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives. Mary Poppins also introduces the children to a new assortment of colorful and whimsical characters, including her eccentric cousin, Topsy (Streep)
Mary Poppins Returns is set to open in theaters on December 25, 2018.