Disney fans hoping to catch a glimpse of the most anticipated Saving Mr. Banks got their wish during the live-action panel this Saturday at the D23 Expo. Not one, but three extended clips were shown to a packed house. To much of the audience’s delight, these clips put Saving Mr. Banks into better perspective showing some of the great tension and humor that is to be expected when the film releases this December. To learn more about what was shown, read on, but minor spoilers beware.
Starting with the first clip, we meet P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) as she arrives on the Burbank lot of Walt Disney Studios for her first day of production. She is greeted by screenwriter Don DaGradi (Bradley Whitford), who makes the mistake of not using her surname, along with the music and lyrics team helmed by the Sherman Brothers (Jason Schwartzman and B.J. Novak). Right off the bat we begin to feel some tension between the production crew and Travers as she shoots down the idea of a musical. Hoping to give her a tour of the studio before she meets Mr. Walt Disney himself (Tom Hanks), she declines stating, “no one likes a showoff.”
The group moves around the lot via golf cart as Travers complains that she is capable of walking. An instrumental version of “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah” plays in the background as they head toward Mr. Disney’s office. As she enters the lobby, it’s all business for Ms. Travers, practically keeping Disney’s secretary on the edge of her seat. Walt then appears down the hallway, bright and cheerful, as he welcomes her with open arms. Travers is a bit taken aback by his warmth and goodwill as he exclaims, ” I could just eat you up,” as she replies “That would be inappropriate.”
The two begin a private conversation about Walt’s promise to his daughters to adapt Mary Poppins into a movie, but Travers still weary, keeps her guard up. “She’s not for sale,” she replies. They begin to go back and forth about what would be good for the movie. “Mary Poppins does not sing,” Travers continues. “She’s not a giddy woman… I wont’ turn her into one of your silly cartoons.” Things become more serious as Walt lowers his tone and becomes slightly curt with Travers. He sits down close to her and explains his love for her character, asking her to share her. End clip.
We move on to the second clip featuring Travers being escorted by one of Disney’s personal drivers played by Paul Giamatti. They pull up to the gates of Disneyland as Travers continues to complain of her distaste for the idea of stepping foot in the happiest place on Earth. “Wow, there he is,” Giamatti says with excitement as they open the gates and they drive in. Travers lips begin to purse and she is in the least bit amused.
As the driver opens the car door for Travers, Disney welcomes her to the loving embrace of Disneyland. In a look that could only be described as disgust, she asks “Do you get everything you want?” “Pretty much. With the exceptions of the [Mary Poppins movie] rights” he happily replies. A crowd of Disney fanatics rush to meet the man, the myth, the legend to gain his autograph and he pulls out cards already signed.
They walk through the park as they reach the carousel, which Disney says is his favorite ride and asks that Travers joins him. Reluctant, he sternly insists her to “Get on the horse, Pam.” Giving in to his kind demand, Disney turns to confess that he just won twenty-bucks because the boys didn’t believe he could get her on a ride.
The last clip presented takes place within the writers room with P.L. Travers, DaGradi, and the Sherman brothers. They begin to read the screenplay from page one. Right from the beginning she brutally criticizes bits and pieces of the script from the Banks’ family address to the actors chosen to portray her characters. She particularly has an issue with Dick Van Dyke as the frontrunner for the cast.
As they continue along in the script, the Sherman brothers jump up in excitement to present Travers with the first little diddy of the film that is sung by the character of Bert. She immediately stops them after a few lines in fury that “responstable” is not a word. “We made it up,” they say to her.” “Then unmake it up,” Travers replies back. The Sherman brothers retreat with their tales behind their legs as Schwartzman hides another piece of sheet music with the song “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” on it.
(Click on the thumbnails below to enlarge the images)
What are you looking forward to seeing in this film? Let us know in the comments below.
Saving Mr. Banks arrives in theaters December 20, 2013.
Source: This Is Infamous