Variety is reporting that 3-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep is in talks to join Emily Blunt and Lin Manuel-Miranda in Disney’s sequel to Mary Poppins. Continue reading for more details.
Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt and director Rob Marshall will be reunited after their collaboration on Into the Woods (not to mention that Streep and Blunt previously worked together on Devil Wears Prada as well). Marshall will be directing from a screenplay from David Magee, based on the stories by P.L. Travers. While I originally assumed that Lin Manuel-Miranda’s involvement would stretch to scoring the film, Variety has confirmed that Marc Shaiman and Emmy nominees/Tony-winner Scott Wittman will be responsible for the score. Here’s details about who Streep would be playing as well as a synopsis for the film, courtesy of Variety.
“Streep is said to play the role of Poppins’ cousin, Topsy, a supporting role that wasn’t in the 1964 classic. Streep would also sing for the part, much like she did in “Into the Woods,” which earned her a record 19th Oscar nomination.”
“Blunt stars as the title character in the film with Manuel-Miranda, star of the Broadway smash “Hamilton,” playing another new character, a street lamplighter named Jack. Drawing from the wealth of material in P.L. Travers’ seven Mary Poppins novels, the story will take place in Depression-era London (when the books were originally written) and follows a now-grown Jane and Michael Banks, who, along with Michael’s three children, are visited by the enigmatic Mary Poppins following a personal loss. Through her unique magical skills, and with the aid of her friend Jack, she helps the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives.”
Naturally Meryl Streep’s inclusion in anything elevates the material since she is highly regarded as this generation’s best actress and most nominated actress of all time. She has exhibited her singing chops before in movies like Mama Mia and Into the Woods. The thing that stood out to me in the synopsis is that Manuel-Miranda will be playing an all-new character and would not simply be a return of Bert. I understand this film will be taking place some time after the original feature when the children are all grown up, but I assumed the character of Bert would still be involved in the plot. Either way I’m very curious to see how this film turns out.
I’ll be frank, outside of Chicago I haven’t been a big fan of Marshall’s work as a director and Mary Poppins wasn’t a property that screamed “sequel”. One fact that gives me pause in my criticism is that there are many other Mary Poppins stories to draw ideas from so it’s not simply a Disney cash grab by trying to exploit a beloved classic. So far the casting has been eye-catching and I’m willing to reserve judgement until I see at least a trailer for the movie.
What do you think? Do you like the casting thus far Disney’s Mary Poppins sequel? Share your thoughts below. Mary Poppins is set to arrive in theaters December 25, 2018.