When it was first announced that in Mary Poppins Returns – played to Oscar-winning perfection by Julie Andrews in 1964 – it was a sad day for some fans who, for so many years, wished for the return of the original magical nanny. Being that both Andrews and co-star Dick Van Dyke are both well into their golden years, it seems only natural that others should take their place in a new movie set for a new generation. But has Disney decided to include the original stars after all? According to a , negotiations might just be underway to make it happen.
twenty years later, in a Depression-era London. Mary Poppins returns to help the now grown-up Jane and Michael Banks find joy in their lives in the wake of a terrible tragedy. Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda and Oscar winner Meryl Streep are set to join Emily Blunt in the film. Miranda will portray a lamp lighter named Jack and Streep is in talks to portray Poppins’ cousin Topsy.
So, Cameos? Or Something Far More Worthwhile?
Given the premise of the new film, it doesn’t appear that either Julie Andrews or Dick Van Dyke will be reprising their roles from the original film. Andrews’ reps have denied on previous occasions that she – and Van Dyke – would be involved in the new film at all. But, being that these negotiations are fresh, it would stand to reason Disney wants to keep this under wraps until an official deal can be reached to snag both actors, even if they’re only set to make cameos in the new film.
However, Disney really needs to tread carefully here. Remakes and reboots, especially nowadays, should always walk carefully on reception’s thin ice. If Andrews and Van Dyke are joining the film in a capacity larger than cameo appearances, the studio needs to learn where crossing the line and just enough, can meet in a place that feels satisfying for both the fans of the original and those who are fresh to this classic story.
Sony’s Ghostbusters reboot attempted to do the same with their 2016 relaunch by including the majority of the original cast in either quick cameo roles or incredibly small supporting efforts. But it wasn’t enough to save the film from suffering what appears to be a 70 million dollar loss, effectively – at least in a live-action capacity.
Although it remains unclear if Disney intends to pursue further films beyond Mary Poppins Returns, they should take what happened with Ghostbusters as a warning that even the blessings and inclusion of original cast members does not grant a surefire method of encouraging the fan base of the original film to give the recast sequel a chance.
Mary Poppins Returns is set to enchant audiences when it hits theaters on December 25, 2018.
Should Disney stick to cameos or something more? Sound off in the comments section!
I write books, I make badly timed jokes, and Debbie Harry is my pretend girlfriend. Twitter: OaODCFenoff