Ben Whishaw To Play a Grown Michael Banks in MARY POPPINS RETURNS

Yes, a sequel to Disney's classic Mary Poppins is actually happening, and while I'm far from thrilled that Rob Marshall (Into the Woods) is directing Mary Poppins Returns, I've gotta hand it to him and his casting directors: they've certainly acquired a terrific group of talent for the film so far. Emily Blunt will play the title character, Hamilton's Lin-Manuel Miranda is on board as a street lamplighter named Jack, and Meryl Streep is in talks to play Mary Poppins' cousin, Topsy. Now THR brings word that English actor Ben Whishaw (you likely know him Q in the new Bond movies) is in negotiations to play an older version of Michael Banks in the new film. Here's part of the synopsis to get a sense of what that would mean for the story:

Drawing from the wealth of material in P.L. Travers’ seven additional novels, the story will take place in Depression-era London (when the books were originally written) and follows a now-grown Jane and Michael Banks, who, along with Michael’s three children, are visited by the enigmatic Mary Poppins following a personal loss. Through her unique magical skills, and with the aid of her friend Jack, she helps the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives.

Sounds like the role will tap into Whishaw's outstanding ability to translate vulnerability to the screen. Check him out in the underrated Cloud Atlas if you're looking for more Whishaw to catch up with before this one comes out.

Mary Poppins Returns hits theaters on December 25, 2018.

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