Director talks Julie Andrews And Mary Poppins Returns

During a recent interview with Entertainment WeeklyMary Poppins Returns director Rob Marshall revealed the original Mary Poppins, Julie Andrews, won’t be appearing in the sequel. Here are some highlights:

On approaching her with the idea years ago: “She had known it was in the works, then we said, ‘We’re doing it,’ and she said, ‘Oh, thank God.’ 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.”

On having her blessing: “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.”

On why she won’t 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.’ She said it’s time and she said, ‘I know it’ll be cared for.’ And that’s the thing I think about every day when I’m at work. We all do.”