Meryl Streep had a painfully humbling moment during filming for Mary Poppins Returns. In a special edition of People magazine that takes readers inside the world of Mary Poppins and its sequel, Streep confessed that when she tried to show off for the kid actors on set, it didn’t go quote the way she planned.
“We were in the middle of my big musical number, and I was showing off,” Streep told People. “I told [Nathanael Saleh, Pixie Davies, and Joel Dawson (John, Annabel, and Georgie Banks in the film)], the first thing they teach you in drama school is how to fall down. So I marched across the room and pretended to trip and fell down.”
Unfortunately, Streep fell too hard, and ended up having to ice her sore knees for three full days after the incident. “I did it so hard on both of my knees I practically broke them!” she said. “I thought, ‘Don’t be such a jerk, you’re not 11 years old anymore.’”
However, she also admitted that she would do it again: “I got a big laugh from the kids, so it was worth it.”
In Mary Poppins Returns, Streep plays Topsy, the titular character’s kooky cousin. It marks her third time costarring in a film with Emily Blunt, who slips into Dame Julie Andrews’ shoes to play Mary Poppins in the film.
“Topsy is a woman whose world is turned upside-down on the second Wednesday of every month,” Streep said in an interview for Walt Disney Studios. “The disorientation of that is such a great metaphor for life.”
In the same set of interviews, Blunt said, “Topsy and Mary Poppins have a really colorful relationship, which was really fun to play. I would love to work with [Streep] on everything.”
From what we can tell, the Mary Poppins Returns cast are all quite fond of working with each other. Speaking to People, Streep gushed about the child actors she tried so hard to impress, noting “the children are just beyond—you would not believe how great they are.”
Mary Poppins Returns is in theaters now.