It is never easy for an actor to take on an iconic role made famous by a Hollywood legend. Particularly that of a classic character like Mary Poppins, made famous by none other than Dame Julie Andrews, who won an Oscar for the part!
So it is understandable that, when Emily Blunt was cast as the title character for the 2018 sequel, Mary Poppins Returns, she felt the weight of responsibility in playing the magical nanny. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, she described taking on the part as "scary" but said that it was her dream.
Of course, we don't know how the audience will react to her until the movie premieres, but, for now, she can take comfort in the knowledge that the original Mary Poppins, Julie Andrews, seems to approve of her!
Emily Blunt was not present when the legendary Miss Andrews gave her thoughts on the matter, but the film's director, Rob Marshall conveyed the reaction to her.
"Rob [Marshall] said he was in the Hamptons, and he saw [Julie Andrews]." Emily explained, "He said, 'It’s top secret, but Emily Blunt’s playing Mary Poppins.' And she went, 'Oh, wonderful!'"
Oh wonderful, indeed, since Emily felt emotional when she heard it. "I felt like I wanted to cry," she said "It was lovely to get her stamp of approval. That took the edge off it, for sure."
Mary Poppins Returns has already started production, and the cast is currently filming in London. Joining Miss Blunt is a star-studded ensemble led by two other legends in the film industry!
Three-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep will be portraying eccentric cousin Topsy, while five-time Tony Award winner and Honorary Oscar recipient Angela Lansbury was cast as the Balloon Lady. Academy Award winner Colin Firth is set to play William Weatherly, while three-time Tony winner Lin-Manuel Miranda of Hamilton will be playing a lamplighter named Jack. As an added treat, Dick Van Dye is set to return for a cameo but not as his main character, Bert. Hopefully, though, they'll incorporate some of the old animation -- that will just be supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!