It couldn’t be more true. Earlier this week, The Walt Disney Studios announced the beginning of production for a new film surrounding the rather dramatic events that surrounded the pre-production of the classic 1964 film ‘Mary Poppins’.
As the back story goes…
When [P.L.] Travers (owner, author of the original novel ‘Mary Poppins’) travels from London to Hollywood in 1961 to finally discuss Disney’s desire to bring her beloved character to the motion picture screen (a quest he began in the 1940s as a promise to his two daughters), Disney meets a prim, uncompromising sexagenarian not only suspect of the impresario’s concept for the film, but a woman struggling with her own past. During her stay in California, Travers’ reflects back on her childhood in 1906 Australia, a trying time for her family which not only molded her aspirations to write, but one that also inspired the characters in her 1934 book.
None more so than the one person whom she loved and admired more than any other—her caring father, Travers Goff, a tormented banker who, before his untimely death that same year, instills the youngster with both affection and enlightenment (and would be the muse for the story’s patriarch, Mr. Banks, the sole character that the famous nanny comes to aide). While reluctant to grant Disney the film rights, Travers comes to realize that the acclaimed Hollywood storyteller has his own motives for wanting to make the film—which, like the author, hints at the relationship he shared with his own father in the early 20th Century Midwest.
This drama might have been unknown to the majority of you. It was to us, but nevertheless, we’re excited to actually learn about it and see how much work went into creating one of the most timeless Disney films ever made.
The film will also have an all-star cast as well! The film will feature portrayals of all the main people that were involved with bringing Mary to the Big Screen including Walt Disney himself. He will be played by Academy Award winner Tom Hanks!
Hanks will be playing the role of a lifetime as this will be the first time that the “entrepreneur” and founder of the company that holds his name will appear in a full-length motion picture.
The rest of the experienced cast will also play some awesome first-time roles. They include:
- Emma Thompson as P.L. Travers
- Colin Farrell as Travers Goff (father of P.L. Travers; the person whom Mr. Banks is modeled after in the original ‘Mary Poppins’ film)
- Ruth Wilson as Margaret Goff (“long-suffering” wife of Travers Goff)
- Rachel Griffiths as Aunt Ellie (Margret Goff’s sister; the person whom Mary Poppins is modeled after in the original film)
- Annie Buckley (new, 11-year-old film actress) as Young P.L. Travers; nicknamed “Ginty” in the flashback scenes
More of the ensemble cast includes Bradley Whitford, Jason Schwartzman, B.J. Novak, Paul Giamatti, and Kathy Baker.
Directed by John Lee Hancock, “Saving Mr. Banks” will film entirely in the Los Angeles area , as well as at key locations to the film’s story that include Disneyland and the Walt Disney Studios [Headquarters of The Walt Disney Company].
Filming is currently taking place and will conclude around Thanksgiving of this year. The film will be released sometime in 2013.
UPDATE 7/24/13: Here’s the first official movie poster…and here’s the first official trailer.
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We know that this story will be seen by many, so we want to hear from you! What do you all think about what this film will be like? Any comments on the cast? Have you even heard about the dramatic story behind the making of ‘Mary Poppins’?
Let us know in the comments below and please spread the word about this exciting film!