If you’ve seen Disney’s beloved 1964 classic Mary Poppins, you probably assume that the process of bringing the effervescent musical about the magical nanny to the big screen was, like Mary Poppins herself, “practically perfect in every way.” Well, not exactly.
As chronicled in the upcoming Disney film Saving Mr. Banks, the real-life tale behind Mary Poppins was a thorny creative struggle that was often short on spoonfuls of sugar, with Poppins author P.L. Travers (played in the film by Emma Thompson) fighting Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) every step of the way out of fear that he’d suck the magic and mystery out of the character she’d created.
In Entertainment Weekly’s Holiday Movie Preview issue, on stands this Friday, we delve deeper into the real story behind Saving Mr. Banks, which hits theaters Dec. 20. But in the meantime, here’s an exclusive clip from the movie, in which the prickly Travers meets Disney for the first time and gets her initial taste of his famously irresistible charm.