Angela Lansbury has joined the cast of Mary Poppins Returns.
The 91-year-old actress is the latest addition to director Rob Marshall’s upcoming musical sequel, which will star Emily Blunt in the title role. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Angela will play a character called Balloon Lady, who features in author P.L. Travers’ tales about the magical nanny.
The movie sees Mary returning to the Banks family to find Jane (Emily Mortimer) and Michael (Ben Whishaw) have now grown up but Michael needs assistance with his three children to help them all rediscover the joy of life.
As was previously announced, the film will also feature Meryl Streep, Colin Firth, Julie Walters, and Lin-Manuel Miranda, as well as child actors Pixie Davies, Nathanael Saleh and Joel Dawson.
And Dick Van Dyke – who starred opposite Julie Andrews in the 1964 original movie – recently confirmed he’ll be returning as jack-of-all-trades Bert.
He said: “This one supposedly takes place 20 years later and the kids are all grown up. It’s a great cast – Meryl Streep, Angela Lansbury and that guy [Lin-Manuel Miranda] from ‘Hamilton’.”
The Hollywood actor “just knew” he had to be a part of the original movie as soon as he heard the score.
He added: “There was a spirit about that thing from the very beginning. Walt [Disney] had me in, and I heard the score and saw the scenes storyboarded on a wall, and I just knew.”
The 91-year-old star insisted he has no intention of retiring from acting because he thinks having a quieter lifestyle would make him age quicker.
He said: “I think it’s the worst thing you can do. Certain people who do retire suddenly age. I think you have to stay active.”
Mary Poppins Returns is scheduled for release at Christmas 2018.