Mary Poppins Returns: Julie Andrews explains why she won't appear

Her co-star Dick van Dyke will, however, be making an appearance, though not as his beloved character Bert

Clarisse Loughrey
Sunday 11 June 2017 10:43
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Mary Poppins Returns - Official Trailer

Julie Andrews won't be making a cameo appearance in the upcoming sequel Mary Poppins Returns.

Though for the sweetest and most supportive reason possible, as she'll do anything to ensure her successor to the role, Emily Blunt, is given the fullest spotlight possible. She's lent her full approval to Blunt's casting, with director Rob Marshall revealing how Andrews reacted to the news to Entertainment Weekly.

"She had known it was in the works, then we said, ‘We’re doing it,’ and she said, ‘Oh, thank God,'" Marshall stated. "Then we said, ‘And we’re thinking of Emily Blunt,’ and she just threw her hands up in the air and said yes. I think a lot of people feel that way about Emily’s work."

He added: "Julie will always be, for me and for everybody, the most astonishing performance as Mary Poppins, winning the Oscar and bursting onto the scene so brilliantly. But Emily is the perfect person to carry the torch, and I know Julie feels the exact same way. She loves her."

Which is why she decided not to take up a cameo appearance in the film, out of respect for Blunt, with Marshall explaining: "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.'"


Her co-star Dick van Dyke, however, will appear, though not as Bert; he'll play the son to the original film's villain Mr. Dawes Sr., a role van Dyke had also played.

The film is set to flash forward to the era of the Great Depression and a now grown-up Jane (Emily Mortimer) and Michael (Ben Wishaw) Banks, alongside Michael's three children. After a tragedy which leaves their lives completely bereft of joy, the Banks' former nanny makes a return visit, with the help of lamplighter Jack (Lin-Manuel Miranda).

Mary Poppins Returns hits UK cinemas 21 December 2018.

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