Emily Blunt shares Julie Andrews’ reaction to Mary Poppins Returns casting
After a string of increasingly dark roles including Edge of Tomorrow (2014), Sicario (2015), and Oct. 7’s hotly anticipated The Girl on the Train, Emily Blunt is ready to lighten up. “I enjoy the challenge to be versatile… [but] I want to find the silliness again,” she tells EW.
And her next major role will be a big departure from The Girl on the Train: She’s stepping into Julie Andrews’ iconic shoes as Mary Poppins in Rob Marshall’s Mary Poppins Returns, currently slated for a December 2018 release. “I feel a little more trepidation with this [character] because she’s so emblematic of people’s nostalgia,” Blunt says. “It’s such an important character in people’s childhood.”
While Andrews’ version of the magical nanny was sweet but firm, Blunt says her Mary Poppins will be slightly different — closer to the character from P.L. Travers’ original series. “We’re delving into the books a lot more,” she explains, “which is a different version of the character, I’ll say that much.” When she’s reminded that book Poppins is slightly tougher than fans of the 1964 film might expect, Blunt gives a coy smile: “She’s a little meaner, yeah.”
Blunt hadn’t yet spoken to Andrews when she sat down with EW in early August, but Mary Poppins Returns director Rob Marshall had — and he relayed the experience to her. “Rob said he was in the Hamptons, and he saw [Andrews], and he said, ‘It’s top secret, but Emily Blunt’s playing Mary Poppins,’” Blunt recalls. “And she went, ‘Oh, wonderful!’”
“I felt like I wanted to cry,” she says. “It was lovely to get her stamp of approval. That took the edge off it, for sure.”
I’ve added some photos of Emily attending The Hollars New York screening (August 18). I’ll be updating the gallery with missing event photos as soon as possible.
Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro and Josh Brolin are reprising their characters for the sequel to 2015 drama Sicario. The crime thriller revolved around an FBI attempt to take down a Mexican drug cartel with the help of a shady character, played by Del Toro.
“We’re in full development with the studio,” producer Molly Smith told The Hollywood Reporter. “I just got a draft (of the script), and we’re really excited.”
Fellow producer Trent Luckinbill added, “We can’t reveal the plot, but you’ll see them (Blunt, Del Toro and Brolin) all come back. “You have such a great character with Benicio, who was as dark as he was… That character resonates so well with audiences. People want to know what happened to him, so it’s a perfect foray for us to explore.”
A director for the sequel has yet to be named, but the producers hope Denis Villeneuve will return. “He’s a busy man, but he’s certainly part of the process with us right now,” Luckinbill added.