“Mary Poppins” delights at 2014 TCM Classic Film Festival with family focus, insights from songwriter Richard Sherman

in Disney, Entertainment, Events, Movies

Last week, classic movie buffs descended on Hollywood, Calif. to attend the 2014 TCM Classic Film Festival. As Inside the Magic‘s resident filmmaker and movie lover, I couldn’t pass up attending.

For those not familiar with the festival, it’s a four day extravaganza celebrating classic film with non-stop screenings on six different screens at some of Hollywood’s most historic cinema palaces. In addition to the film screenings, there were also opportunities to hear discussions about the films from noted critics, historians, filmmakers, and stars.

The 2014 festival took place on Thursday, April 10 through Sunday, April 13, coinciding with TCM’s 20th anniversary as a leading authority in classic film. The Festival’s theme this year was Family in the Movies: The Ties that Bind.

The TCM Film Festival usually features some of Walt Disney’s classics. This year, they screened his masterpiece, Mary Poppins at the El Capitan Theatre. What better film to represent the family-centric theme of this year’s festival?

Before the screening in typical El Capitan fashion, we were delighted by the Wurlitzer organist playing some well known Disney songs, including a medley of Mary Poppins songs.


Video: El Capitan organ plays Disney songs at 2014 TCM Film Festival


Organ inside the El Capitan Theatre.

Robert Osbourne, TCM’s on screen host introduced the film, adding his own personal anecdotes and points of interest in much the same way he does when introducing films on TV. After the film left us all in tears… again, song writer and Disney Legend, Richard Sherman was brought out for a short interview regarding his part in the timeless film.

Donald Bogle and Richard Sherman discussing Mary Poppins.

He shared that Walt Disney initially asked him and his brother Robert if they knew what a nanny was. They were used to writing quirky songs so they thought he wanted them to write about a nanny goat. My favorite part of the interview was hearing him speak about Saving Mr. Banks. He said meeting Mrs. Travers, the writer of Mary Poppins, was like “taking a warm shower and then having ice water poured on you.”

Sherman was incredibly humble, making sure to point out that Mary Poppins was the product of 100 different artists coming together to create something great. “I speak for all of them.” He’s always a class act.

To hear words from Osbourne and Sherman from the 2014 TCM Film Festival, tune in to Show 472 of the Inside the Magic podcast this Sunday, April 20, 2014.

Later in the day, Leonard Maltin sat down with Richard Sherman for a more in-depth interview.

Richard Sherman in Club TCM.

The TCM Classic Film Festival is Heaven on Earth for classic film buffs. I’ve attended every year and have always enjoyed discovering films I’ve never seen, celebrating ones I have, and meeting friendly people from all over the world. Make plans to come to Hollywood next spring. You won’t regret it. And you might just see a Disney legend live and in person.