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Glynis Johns, Disney Legend Known for Role in ‘Mary Poppins’ Passes Away at 100

Glynis Johns, Disney Legend Known for Role in 'Mary Poppins' Passes Away at 100 glynis-johns-passes-away-02

Disney Legend Glynis Johns passed away on Thursday, January 4, in Los Angeles from natural causes, her manager confirmed. She was 100 years old.

Perhaps best known to Disney fans as feminist Winifred Banks in the Academy Award®-winning Mary Poppins (1964), Johns became everyone’s favorite sister suffragette. Walt Disney himself personally selected her to play the career-defining role, having been drawn, like many a moviegoer, by her sparkling screen persona. His choice of casting was spot on, as film critic Leonard Maltin pointed out in his book The Disney Films: ‘She lights up the screen the minute she appears [in Mary Poppins],’ he wrote. ‘She makes every minute count, and her amusing suffragette song is most enjoyable.’

Inducted as a Disney Legend in 1998, Johns was born to Welsh parents on October 5, 1923, in Pretoria, South Africa. She made history when she received a degree to teach dance by age 10. By 12, she won 25 gold medals for dance in England and, by 13, appeared in her first film, South Riding (1938). Her first adult role came in Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s 49th Parallel (1941), released in America as The Invadersand starring Laurence Olivier, Leslie Howard, and Raymond Massey. By 19, she became the youngest actress to play the lead role in the theatrical production of Peter Pan.

The Walt Disney Company
Glynis Johns, Disney Legend Known for Role in 'Mary Poppins' Passes Away at 100 glynis-johns-passes-away

She became associated with The Walt Disney Studios in the early 1950s when it began to produce live-action films in England. You can read more about her lovely career here.

Senior Editor for the DIS and DCL Fan | Disney Vacation Club Member | Thrilled to have been a '13/'14 Disney Parks Moms Panelist (now planDisney) | Lover of all things Disney; the Magic of Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and Disney Cruise Line | ºoº


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