Emily Blunt has officially landed the role of Mary Poppins in a Disney sequel set for release in 2018.
Rumors suggesting 33-year-old British actress was the frontrunner to take on the titular role in the family movie first emerged in February (16), and on Tuesday (31May16), Disney executives officially announced she is their leading lady.
Variety reports Blunt will be joined by Lin-Manuel Miranda, the star and creator of Broadway smash Hamilton, and the sequel, titled Mary Poppins Returns, will hit cinemas on Christmas Day (25Dec18).
Blunt will be reuniting with the director and production team behind her hit 2014 Disney musical Into the Woods, and filmmaker Rob Marshall can't wait to work with her again. Marshall, who is also producing the upcoming film with John DeLuca and Marc Platt, says, "I am truly humbled and honored to be asked by Disney to bring P.L. Travers’ further adventures to the screen.
"The iconic original film means so much to me personally, and I look forward to creating an original movie musical that can bring Mary Poppins, and her message that childlike wonder can be found in even the most challenging of times, to a whole new generation."
Julie Andrews played the Banks family's magical nanny in the original 1964 fantasy film opposite Dick Van Dyke, who portrayed lovable chimney sweep Bert.
Mary Poppins Returns has a similar plotline set-up, however Blunt's Mary Poppins character will be joined by Miranda's streetlamp lighter Jack. The pair partner up to help the Banks children, who are now full-grown adults, find magic in life again during Depression-era London.
Marc Shaiman is teaming up with Tony Award winner Scott Wittman to compose original songs and a score for Mary Poppins Returns.