The legendary actress shares how she nearly derailed her career after getting her big break and offers some advice -- from personal experience -- on how Meghan Markle should handle the tabloids.
Dame Julie Andrews may not have been willing to kiss and tell, but she was more than happy to dish on a career spanning more than 70 years on "Watch What Happens Live," and we all know Andy Cohen loves a good dish!
The 84-year-old stunner kicked off her film career in style with "Mary Poppins," but famously missed out on a role in "My Fair Lady" to get the role. Jack Warner, of Warner Bros. studio, had actually chosen Audrey Hepburn for the latter film, which created the opportunity for Andrews to step into the iconic role.
And yet, the young actress created quite a stir when she thanked Warner in her Golden Globes acceptance speech. "He was there that night," Andrews said. "For one second, I thought that my career had completely ended and I'd never seen again. There was a moment of silence and then the audience got what I was saying."
Thankfully, there were no hard feelings and Andrews said she and Hepburn went on to become close friends. "It's really difficult to get uptight about not doing the film of 'My Fair Lady' when Walt Disney is standing there saying, 'Would you like to do "Mary Poppins."'"
"Mary Poppins Returns"
Of course, there was no way Andrews could get out of there without talking about Emily Blunt's take on her most famous role, in the 2018 sequel "Mary Poppins Returns." What did the original Mary Poppins think of the newcomer?
"I loved it," Andrews said, adding that it was about time audiences allowed a second film. As she noted, author P.L Travers wrote a whole series of books based on Mary Poppins, so why did we stop at one? It's the same question that plagued Oz fans for so long before they finally got a sequel to that iconic film from the golden age of Hollywood.
But it wasn't an easy transition for everyone, including fellow guest Whoopi Goldberg, who admitted it took her some getting used to. "For me, you know, Julie is always going to be Mary Poppins," Goldberg said, though she did concede that Blunt was "wonderful" and that it was nice to have a new film for the next generation, though we're not sure Disney will wait another 30 years or more to make a third one.
"Princess Diaries 3"
While Andrews said she turned down a role in "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" because she didn't want to do a film similar to her "Mary Poppins" role, she has done two "Princess Diaries" films and seemed surprised to hear that Anne Hathaway says there's a script in place for a third.
"The truth is I haven't heard but there's been talk about it for quite a while," Andrews admitted. "I think she's had or is having a second child and she's busy and I've been busy. I think if it happens it would be lovely."
She then added with a wink and a smile -- as only Mary Poppins can give -- "And if it doesn't, I won't have known about it."
In perhaps the most unexpected casting of her career, Andrews admits she's still a little confused that DC wanted her for "Aquaman," telling Cohen that her first thought when asked was "that I couldn't possibly do it."
The iconic screen legend took on the role of a "gravel-mouthed" mythical leviathan, the keeper of the Trident of Atlan. And while Andrews isn't seen on-screen, it's easy to tell how much fun she was having playing against type in her voice work.
Thinking maybe they just wanted to trade on her name, which she was fine with, Andrews attacked it with gusto and won huge brownie points with her grandkids, and DC fans, for her efforts.
If you think tabloids are a more recent problem for people in the public eye, Julie Andrews is here to let you know they've been a problem for decades upon decades. But she also wasn't shy about finally putting her foot down, despite advice to simply ignore them and carry on with her work.
When reports started coming out that she was involved in a polyamorous relationship with her husband Blake Edwards and Rock Hudson, she finally decided enough is enough.
"The tabloids were going absolutely crazy about me at the time and trying it on, as they do, and I decided that for a change I'd really put my foot down," she said. And so she sued. "I did it and I won and got retractions in the same size print as the articles themselves. And then I gave the money to charity."
And as a huge fan of the royals, she's seen how much heat Meghan Markle has been taking in the tabloids basically since she and Prince Harry revealed they were even dating. But she acknowledged there is one key difference.
Andrews explained that the royal family is "owned by Britain, by the country, so it's very hard for them to sue. They're not normally allowed to." But after a beat, she added, "I hope she does."
Julie Andrews Drag Pageant
Finally, Cohen decided to celebrate Julie Andrews' legendary film career by honoring her with a drag queen pageant all her own, feauturing three of her most iconic roles from "Mary Poppins," "The Sound of Music" and "The Princess Diaries." And the best thing? Andrews got to choose the winner!
Check out who killed their look and took home all the accolades in the video above.
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