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‘Mary Poppins’ sequel to star Lin-Manuel Miranda, Emily Blunt

Actress Emily Blunt, shown here at the premiere

Actress Emily Blunt, shown here at the premiere of "The Huntsman: Winter's War" on April 11, 2016, in California, will star in a "Mary Poppins" sequel. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Frederick M. Brown

Walt Disney Pictures’ “Mary Poppins” sequel will be released Christmas Day 2018, the studio announced Tuesday, while confirming reports that Lin-Manuel Miranda will star opposite Emily Blunt.

Miranda, the writer, composer and star of the Broadway hit “Hamilton: An American Musical,” will play a new character, a street lamplighter named Jack. Using material from “Mary Poppins” author P.L. Travers’ seven additional novels about a magical nanny, the story will take place in Depression-era London, the original time and locale of the books.

In the film, Mary Poppins, who has suffered a personal loss, returns to now-grown Jane and Michael Banks, and Michael’s three children. Through her magical skills and the aid of her friend Jack, “she helps the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives,” Disney said.

Rob Marshall (“Chicago,” “Into the Woods”) is directing this sequel to the classic 1964 film and Travers’ 1934 novel, with Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman composing new songs. The screenplay will be written by David Magee.

“I am truly humbled and honored to be asked by Disney to bring P.L. Travers’ further adventures to the screen,” Marshall said in a statement. “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.”

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