Disney Theatricals and Cameron Mackintosh plan to co-produce a stage musical version of the classic film "Mary Poppins." A spokesman for Mackintosh confirmed the news. This will mark the first pairing of the two theatre giants, Disney Theatricals, represented on Broadway with the long-running hits The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast and Aida; and Cameron Mackintosh, who has produced the three longest-running shows in Broadway history, Cats, Les Misérables and The Phantom of the Opera. It's a necessary arrangement, too, as Disney holds the rights to the film's classic songs, while Mackintosh has the rights to the original book penned by P. L. Travers.
The New York Times reports that the stage Poppins will likely play London's West End — during the 2004-05 season — prior to Broadway, although Mackintosh's office could not confirm this information.
The beloved 1964 Disney film "Mary Poppins" starred Julie Andrews in the title role opposite the Bert of Dick Van Dyke. Directed by Robert Stevenson, the movie boasted a score by the Sherman brothers (Richard and Robert) and featured such tunes as "A Spoonful of Sugar," "Jolly Holiday," "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious," "Feed the Birds," "Chim Chim Cher-ee" and "Let's Go Fly a Kite." Nominated for an Academy Award as Best Picture, the film garnered Oscars for Julie Andrews as well as those for Best Special Visual Effects; Best Film Editing; Best Score; and Best Song ("Chim Chim Cher-ee").