Disney invited me to attend the #MaryPoppinsReturnsEvent, this interview with Pixie Davies and Joel Dawson is a result of the trip. The opinions expressed here are my own. Some interview questions and responses have been edited to improve readability.
Pixie Davies and Joel Dawson play two of Michael Banks’ children, Annabel and Georgie in Mary Poppins Returns. We sat down and spoke with this two adorable actors about their experience in this iconic movie. Check out what they had to say below.
What was your favorite part of filming the movie?
Joel: I really liked the part when I had to dive through the bushes and then got dragged along by the kite. That was a really fun scene.
Pixie: I think it was Trip a Little Light Fantastic because it was just incredible watching the dance. It just gets better every time.
How did you feel when you got the part?
Pixie: Yeah, I thought I was gonna burst. 😀
Joel: Well my agent already knew so she came over and as she was there, then Rob Marshall called me and he said we want you to have the part. And then I had it on speakerphone and everyone was just so silent and my eyes were watering. And my mum was squealing after the phone call.
What’s your favorite song in the movie?
Joel: Underneath the (lovely) London Sky.
Pixie: I do really like that one.
Joel: Yeah, that one is really nice.
Pixie: Still Tripping the Light Fantastic, I want to say it’s just a good song. It’s really like fun and dancey, yeah.
Joel: They’re all really good. Really it’s very hard to choose.
What did you do between filming?
Pixie: We had tutoring a lot, which was, it was okay, you know, it was tutoring. But we had quite a lot of fun. We had like tents, and there was a place, craft (services) the most magical place on earth. There was lots of food and it was great.
Joel: I remember one day they had a chocolate water fountain with marshmallows and cookies and strawberries.
Pixie: There was loads of fun surprises like that. And you were just like oh okay, wow!
Was there anything surprising when you saw the film?
Pixie: Yeah, the green screen because you don’t know when, ‘cause you’re in a green room and then you watch the film and you’re like oh, that’s so detailed. And even if you were, like on topsy (scene), there are things on the camera that it picks up, that you don’t pick up in your eye, and you sort of watch the film and you’re like oh, I didn’t realize that was there, or oh yeah, I remember that. And then sometimes it’s just a bit of a surprise ‘cause if you were actually there then it’s a bit confusing if you see something that wasn’t there.
Was it scary or fun to work on the crane for the flying scene?
Pixie: Very, fun, very, very fun.
Joel: It was fun, kind of uncomfortable though.
Pixie: The harnesses are like, they’re uncomfortable but that’s okay.
Joel: They’re very, very stiff so you really itch.
Pixie: But people think that they just hold you up, but you have to hold up your legs and your head and your core. It just holds like that bit and you have to like hold up everything else, so it kind of hurts after a while and your legs kind of go dead.
What do your siblings think about you being in the movie?
Pixie: They’re all really proud of me and it’s really fun because they all love Mary Poppins and they’re really happy and they’ve seen, well two of my siblings have seen (Mary Poppins) Returns and they really loved it and they’re really excited to see it again tonight.
Joel: Yeah, my sister, she’s been really supportive of me during the past few months that we have had where we’re not allowed to tell anyone. I remember one time when I just blurted it all out accidentally because I had signed the papers to say, no I’m not gonna do it, but I still hadn’t got the job. I didn’t know so it was like, I just accidentally blurted it out when my teacher said hey, what are we all looking forward to? And I just accidentally just blurted it out.
Was there anything you wanted to take home from the set?
Pixie: Costumes, because they were amazing, and the animated sequence, that was hand-painted and handmade. Well, all their costumes are handmade but the hand-painted ones are really, really special because they had gone through so much process of doing all of that and that was really so that was really so special that people go through all of this hard work just for you. And it’s kind of like oh, for me?
Joel: If it was really magical, I would take the bath.
Besides Mary Poppins, what’s your favorite Disney movie?
Pixie: I really like The Little Mermaid and The Aristocats, and Saving Mr. Banks because it’s fun seeing it all behind the scenes (Mary Poppins action). I like Pocahontas. Yeah, I like all the Disney movies, like the classic Disney movies.