Julie Andrews: P. L. Travers was tough!
Julie Andrews doesn’t believe the film Saving Mr Banks pulled any punches about how formidable Mary Poppins writer P. L. Travers was.
The British actress is famous for portraying the magical nanny in the 1964 Disney fantasy film alongside Dick Van Dyke. The struggle Walt Disney had to secure the rights to the book written by the Australian author was documented in the 2013 film Saving Mr. Banks and Julie thinks it was a true representation of how fearsome she was in real life.
“Yes. Tough!” she exclaimed to Britain’s The Independent newspaper. “And the movie does not pull any punches.”
Walt Disney and Travers had a difficult relationship which was portrayed by Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson respectively in the movie.
Julie had her own run ins with the author and recalled how Travers called her the day after she had given birth to her daughter Emma and demanding they meet for tea.
“This voice said, ‘Hello, this is P. L. Travers. Is this Julie?’ I said, ‘Yes.’ She said, ‘Well, talk to me.’” she added. “I said ‘I just had a baby yesterday Ms Travers,’ and she said, ‘Well, you are going to be doing Mary Poppins, right?’ And she said ‘Well, of course you are far too pretty, but you have got the nose for it.’”
Despite Travers’ reservations over the film, it became an instant classic and received 13 Academy Award nominations including a Best Actress nod for Julie. Despite this, the 80-year-old believes the writer still had issues with the whole production.
“I don’t think she ever approved totally of the movie,” she admitted. “But she probably cried all the way to the bank, if you know what I mean.”
- Cover Media