While stage and screen star Andrews offered a version of the nanny who had a sweeter edge, Blunt — seen as the Baker’s Wife in the film of Into the Woods — has gone back to the original P.L. Travers book series. “We’re delving into the books a lot more,” Blunt told EW, “which is a different version of the character, I’ll say that much,” adding, “She’s a little meaner [than the Julie Andrews version].”
Blunt also relayed Andrews' reaction to Blunt's casting in the role: “[Director] Rob [Marshall] said he was in the Hamptons, and he saw [Andrews], and he said, ‘It’s top secret, but Emily Blunt’s playing Mary Poppins.’…And she went, ‘Oh, wonderful!’”
“I felt like I wanted to cry,” Blunt said. “It was lovely to get her stamp of approval. That took the edge off it, for sure.”
Marshall is directing the film, which will also feature Hamilton's Lin-Manuel Miranda. Meryl Streep is also in talks for the motion picture, which is set 25 years after the original.
Filming is expected to begin in London in early 2017. Mary Poppins Returns will hit cinemas December 25, 2018.
Producers are Marshall, John DeLuca and Marc Platt.