Mary Poppins Returns

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Mary Poppins Returns
Mary Poppins Returns (2018 film poster).png
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRob Marshall
Produced by
Screenplay byDavid Magee
Story by
  • David Magee
  • Rob Marshall
  • John DeLuca
Based onMary Poppins
by P. L. Travers
Music byMarc Shaiman
CinematographyDion Beebe
Edited byWyatt Smith
Distributed byWalt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Release date
  • November 29, 2018 (2018-11-29) (Dolby Theatre)
  • December 19, 2018 (2018-12-19) (United States)
Running time
130 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
Budget$130 million[2]

Mary Poppins Returns is a 2018 American musical fantasy film directed by Rob Marshall, with a screenplay written by David Magee and a story by Magee, Marshall, and John DeLuca. Based on the book series by P. L. Travers, this sequel to 1964's Mary Poppins stars Emily Blunt as the eponymous character, with Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ben Whishaw, Emily Mortimer, Julie Walters, Dick Van Dyke, Angela Lansbury, Colin Firth, and Meryl Streep in supporting roles. Van Dyke is the only actor from the original to return, portraying the son of one of his original characters. Set in 1930s London, two decades after the events of the original film, it sees Poppins, the former nanny of Jane and Michael Banks, returning after a family tragedy.

The film was officially announced on September 14, 2015. Marshall was hired later that month, and Blunt and Miranda were cast in February 2016. Filming lasted from February to July 2017, and took place at Shepperton Studios in Surrey, England.

Mary Poppins Returns held its world premiere at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on November 29, 2018, and is scheduled to be released in the United States on December 19, 2018, giving it one of the longest gaps between film sequels in history at 54 years.[3][4] The film received mostly positive reviews from critics, who praised Blunt's performance, the music, visuals, production values, and sense of nostalgia, although many found it derivative of the first film.[5] It was chosen by both the National Board of Review and American Film Institute as one of the top ten films of 2018 and received numerous award nominations, including four at the 76th Golden Globe Awards (including for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy), nine at the 24th Critics' Choice Awards as well an Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role nomination for Blunt at the 25th Screen Actors Guild Awards.


"Set in 1930s London, which is the time period of the original novels by P. L. Travers, the story follows Michael (Ben Whishaw) and Jane Banks (Emily Mortimer), who are now grown up. Michael is living with his three children (Pixie Davies, Nathanael Saleh, and Joel Dawson) and housekeeper Ellen (Julie Walters), in the house on Cherry Tree Lane. After Michael has a personal loss, Mary Poppins (Emily Blunt) comes back into the lives of the Banks family. She is joined by a street lamplighter named Jack (Lin-Manuel Miranda), and an eccentric cousin named Topsy (Meryl Streep)."[6]




Development on a sequel to Mary Poppins had long been gestating in development hell since the release of the 1964 film. Walt Disney attempted to produce a sequel a year subsequent to the film's release, but was rejected by author P. L. Travers, who had openly dismissed Disney's film adaptation. In the late 1980s, then-president of Walt Disney Studios Jeffrey Katzenberg and vice-president of live-action production Martin Kaplan approached Travers with the idea of a sequel set years after the first film, with the Banks children now as adults and an older Mary Poppins with Julie Andrews reprising the role. Travers again rejected the proposed concept with the exception of Andrews' return. The studio shortly abandoned the effort.[2]

In September 2015, Walt Disney Pictures president Sean Bailey pitched a new Mary Poppins film to Rob Marshall, John DeLuca, and Marc E. Platt, as the team had produced Into the Woods for the studio the year prior. With approval from Travers' estate, Disney greenlit the project with the film taking place 20 years after the first, featuring a standalone narrative, based on the remaining seven books in the series. Marshall was hired to direct, while DeLuca and Platt would serve as producers along with Marshall; David Magee was hired to write the script.[18]


On February 18, 2016, Emily Blunt was cast in the film to play the title role in the sequel.[8] On February 24, 2016, Lin-Manuel Miranda was cast in the film to play Jack, a lamplighter.[9] In April 2016, Disney confirmed that the film was in development and that Blunt and Miranda had been cast in the lead roles.[7] In May, Disney announced the film's title as Mary Poppins Returns.[19] By July 2016, Meryl Streep had entered negotiations to join the cast to play cousin Topsy,[15] and in the following month, Ben Whishaw in negotiations to play the grownup Michael Banks.[10] In September, Streep formally joined the cast.[20] The following month, Emily Mortimer was cast as the grownup Jane Banks,[11] and Colin Firth joined the film as William Weatherall Wilkins, president of the Fidelity Fiduciary Bank.[14] In February 2017, Angela Lansbury was cast to play the Balloon Lady.[21] Julie Andrews, who portrayed Poppins in the 1964 film, was approached to do a cameo in the sequel, but turned down the offer as she wanted it to be "Emily's show".[22] Dick Van Dyke, who portrayed Bert and Mr. Dawes Sr. in the original film, returns in the sequel as the latter's son, Mr. Dawes Jr., replacing Arthur Malet, who died in 2013.[23]


Principal photography on the film began February 10, 2017, at Shepperton Studios in Surrey, England.[17] Principal photography was wrapped by July 2017.[24]


Like the original film, this film includes a sequence combining live-action and traditional hand-drawn animation. The animation was supervised by Ken Duncan and James Baxter. Over 70 animators specializing in hand-drawn 2D animation from Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios were recruited for the sequence.[25] Duncan and Baxter also helped redesign the penguins from the first film. All of the hand-drawn animation was created by Duncan's animation studio, Duncan Studio, in Pasadena, California.[26]


Mary Poppins Returns (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedDecember 7, 2018
GenreFilm score
LabelWalt Disney

The music and score for the film was composed by Marc Shaiman, with song lyrics written by Scott Wittman and Shaiman.[27] In September 2018, some of the titles of the film's songs were revealed.[28]

On November 26, 2018, "The Place Where Lost Things Go" sung by Blunt, and "Trip a Little Light Fantastic" sung by Miranda and the cast were released along with the soundtrack available for digital pre-order.[29][30] The complete soundtrack album was released by Walt Disney Records on December 7, 2018.[27]

The score also includes musical references to songs and score from the first film written by Sherman Brothers. Richard M. Sherman served as music consultant. These songs include "A Spoonful of Sugar", "The Perfect Nanny", "Feed The Birds"and "Let's Go Fly a Kite".[31]

All lyrics written by Marc Shaiman & Scott Wittman; all music composed by Shaiman.

1."(Underneath the) Lovely London Sky (quotes "The Life I Lead" by the Sherman Brothers)"Lin-Manuel Miranda3:47
2."Overture" 2:28
3."A Conversation"Ben Whishaw2:42
4."Can You Imagine That?"Emily Blunt, Pixie Davies, Joel Dawson & Nathanael Saleh4:22
5."The Royal Doulton Music Hall"Blunt, Miranda, Davies, Dawson & Saleh3:01
6."Introducing Mary Poppins"Miranda & Blunt0:31
7."A Cover is Not the Book"Blunt, Miranda & Company4:25
8."The Place Where Lost Things Go"Blunt3:43
9."Turning Turtle"Meryl Streep, Blunt, Miranda, Davies, Dawson & Saleh4:20
10."Trip a Little Light Fantastic"Miranda, Blunt, Tarik Frimpong, Davies, Dawson, Saleh & Leeries7:02
11."The Place Where Lost Things Go (Reprise)"Dawson, Saleh & Davies1:30
12."Trip a Little Light Fantastic (Reprise)"Dick Van Dyke, Blunt, Miranda, Whishaw, Davies, Dawson & Saleh0:46
13."Nowhere to Go But Up (quotes "Let's Go Fly a Kite" and "A Spoonful of Sugar" by the Sherman Brothers)"Angela Lansbury, Whishaw, Davies, Dawson, Saleh, Miranda, Emily Mortimer, Julie Walters & Company5:45
14."(Underneath the) Lovely London Sky (Reprise) (quotes "A Spoonful of Sugar" and "The Perfect Nanny" by the Sherman Brothers)"Miranda1:52
15."Theme from Mary Poppins Returns" 1:38
16."Kite Takes Off (quotes "Chim Chim Cher-ee" by the Sherman Brothers)"featuring Miranda2:40
17."Mary Poppins Arrives (quotes "A Spoonful of Sugar" and "The Perfect Nanny" by the Sherman Brothers)" 1:41
18."Magic Papers (quotes "Fidelity Fiduciary Bank" by the Sherman Brothers)" 1:33
19."Banks in the Bank (quotes "Fidelity Fiduciary Bank" by the Sherman Brothers)" 0:43
20."Into the Royal Doulton Bowl" 1:58
21."Rescuing Georgie" 4:01
22."Off to Topsy's (quotes "The Perfect Nanny" by the Sherman Brothers)" 2:53
23."Chase Through the Bank" 1:11
24."Lost in a Fog" 0:59
25."Goodbye Old Friend" 2:32
26."Race to Big Ben" 4:55
27."End Title Suite (quotes "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" by the Sherman Brothers)"featuring the cast5:12
Total length:78:10


The film was originally scheduled to be released on December 25, 2018. However, in July 2018, it was moved up to December 19, 2018.[3]


On March 4, 2018, Disney released a teaser trailer for the film, with the release date of December 25.[32][33] On September 17, 2018, Disney released an official trailer which revealed new footage, a snippet of an original song from the film, "The Place Where Lost Things Go," and announced December 19 as the new release date for the film.[34] On October 22, 2018, Disney released a special look on Dancing with the Stars' "Disney Night" which teased an original song from the film, "Can You Imagine That".[35] On November 15, 2018, Disney released a sneak peek which teased another original song from the film, "Trip a Little Light Fantastic".[36] On November 22, 2018, Disney released a special episode of 20/20 on ABC called "Mary Poppins Returns: Behind the Magic" which included an extended look of the film.[37] On November 26, 2018, advance tickets for Mary Poppins Returns went on sale along with the digital pre-order of the soundtrack and the release of two tracks off the soundtrack, "The Place Where Lost Things Go" and "Trip a Little Light Fantastic".[30]


Box office projections[edit]

In the United States and Canada, Mary Poppins Returns is projected to gross around $70 million in its first week of release.[38]

Critical response[edit]

On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 77% based on 64 reviews, with an average rating of 7.4/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Mary Poppins Returns relies on the magic of its classic forebear to cast a familiar -- but still solidly effective -- family-friendly spell."[39] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 70 out of 100, based on 26 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[40]

Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian gives the film 3 out of 5 stars and says 'Emily Blunt is the magical nanny in this scarily accomplished clone-pastiche sequel, which starts terrifically and ends cloyingly – just like the original'[41]Contrastingly, Geoffrey Macnab of The Independent says, 'The nostalgia here could easily have been very cloying. Instead, it adds to the richness and mystery. In an era of superhero franchises where sequels to successful movies turn up almost instantly, Mary Poppins’s return shows that sometimes it pays to wait. Half a century on, her allure hasn’t faded at all.[42]


Award Date of ceremony Category Recipient(s) and nominee(s) Result Ref(s)
American Film Institute January 4, 2019 Top 10 Films of the Year Mary Poppins Returns Won [43]
Annie Awards February 2, 2019 Best Animated Special Production Pending [44]
Outstanding Achievement for Character Animation in a Live Action Production Chris Sauve, James Baxter, Sandro Cleuzo Pending
Outstanding Achievement for Character Design in an Animated Feature Production James Woods Pending
Outstanding Achievement for Production Design in an Animated Feature Production Jeff Turley Pending
Outstanding Achievement for Storyboarding in an Animated Feature Production Ovi Nedelcu Pending
Critics' Choice Movie Awards January 13, 2019 Best Picture Mary Poppins Returns Pending [45]
Best Actress Emily Blunt Pending
Best Production Design John Myhre, Gordon Sim Pending
Best Costume Design Sandy Powell Pending
Best Visual Effects Mary Poppins Returns Pending
Best Actress in a Comedy Emily Blunt Pending
Best Score Marc Shaiman Pending
Best Song "The Place Where Lost Things Go" Pending
"Trip a Little Light Fantastic" Pending
Detroit Film Critics Society December 3, 2018 Best Use of Music Mary Poppins Returns Nominated [46]
Golden Globe Awards January 6, 2019 Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy Pending [47]
Best Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy Lin-Manuel Miranda Pending
Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy Emily Blunt Pending
Best Original Score Marc Shaiman Pending
Hollywood Music in Media Awards November 14, 2018 Original Score – Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror Film Nominated [48]
Original Song – Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror Film "The Place Where Lost Things Go" – Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman Nominated
"Trip a Little Light Fantastic" – Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman Nominated
Humanitas Prize February 8, 2019 Family Feature Film Mary Poppins Returns Pending [49]
National Board of Review January 8, 2019 Top Ten Films Won [50]
Satellite Awards February 17, 2019 Best Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical Mary Poppins Returns Pending [51]
Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical Lin-Manuel Miranda Pending
Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical Emily Blunt Pending
Best Original Song "Can You Imagine That?" – Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman Pending
Best Art Direction and Production Design John Myhre Pending
Best Sound (Editing or Mixing) Mary Poppins Returns Pending
Screen Actors Guild Awards January 27, 2019 Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role Emily Blunt Pending [52]
Seattle Film Critics Society December 17, 2018 Best Costume Design Sandy Powell Pending [53]
Best Production Design John Myhre, Gordon Sim Pending
Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association December 3, 2018 Best Production Design John Myhre Nominated [54]


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External links[edit]