Today marks the fifty-fifth anniversary of the release of Mary Poppins. Based on the popular 1934 children's novel, the film follows the adventures of a dysfunctional English family that are visited by a magical nanny who brings them all together.
The film by The Walt Disney Company faced a troubled production due to the original author's reluctance to Disney's methods and changes. The film was a colossal hit with fans and critics. It received universal praise from critics. It was a hit at the box office, becoming the most profitable film of the year. In the United Kingdom, it ranks as the twentieth highest grossing sound film of the twentieth century. It was noted for its innovation of combining live-action and traditional animation. It was nominated for numerous awards, and winning many. At the time it set a record for most Academy Award nominations for Disney, including Best Picture, ultimately winning five. Despite this, author P.L. Travers was highly critical of the film and refused to sell the film rights to any sequel during her lifetime.
The film has been hailed as one of the best of all time, with particular praise to its musical numbers. It has been referenced in numerous films and television works. It has been called the crowning achievement of Walt Disney's life and is the only film of his to be nominated for Best Picture. A popular stage play, despite not being associated with Disney, was able to use the film's songs. The troubled production led to a critically acclaimed film in 2013 titled Saving Mr. Banks. Following the death of Travers, was able to produce a sequel in 2018 titled Mary Poppins Returns.