MARY POPPINS© 1964 DISNEY ENTERPRISES. INC.
J ULIE ANDREWS, a beloved and honored stage, film,
television and recording star for more than half a century, as well
as a celebrated author and dedicated goodwill ambassador, will
receive the Guild’s most prestigious tribute—the Screen Actors
Guild Life Achievement Award for career achievement and humanitarian
accomplishment. Andrews will be presented the Award, given annually to
an actor who fosters the “finest ideals of the acting profession,” at the
13th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.
IN MAKING THE ANNOUNCEMENT, Screen Actors Guild
President Alan Rosenberg said, “Julie Andrews is a woman of great
generosity, creativity, courage, elegance and wit. She embodies and
transcends the memorable roles she has created. Julie has been a positive
presence in my life and continues to inspire multiple generations. I believe
it is exceptionally significant to be recognized by people who do the same
work you do. Julie seems genuinely touched and thrilled to be receiving
an award from her fellow actors. I have assured her the honor is ours.”
CONTINUED ON PAGE 34
Winter 2006 SCREEN ACTOR | 33
Julie Andrews, continued from page 33
As a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development
Fund for Women (UNIFEM) for 15 years, Andrews traveled as an
advocate for women’s human rights and economic security.
Julie Andrews was already a Broadway legend when she appearance on The Andy Williams Show; and her performance in the
made her feature film debut in 1964’s Mary Poppins. Her iconic special Julie Andrews: The Sound of Christmas. Andrews’ more recent
performance in the title role as the magical nanny brought her an television work includes Eloise at the Plaza and her Emmy-
Academy Award, a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award. The nominated performance in Eloise at Christmastime. She also
following year, she earned a second Oscar nomination and won re-teamed for the third time with James Garner in the telefilm One
another Golden Globe for her unforgettable portrayal of Maria Special Night, starred opposite Christopher Plummer in the CBS live
Von Trapp in The Sound of Music. She production of On Golden Pond and hosted
received her third Academy Award the Emmy-winning PBS series: Broadway:
nomination and won another Golden The American Musical.
Globe for her “dual” role in 1982’s Already an accomplished best-selling
Victor/Victoria. Today’s young film author (The Last of the Really Great
audiences may be more familiar with Whangdoodles, Mandy, Little Bo, Dumpy the
Andrews as a queen trying to train her Dump Truck), Andrews has joined talents
teenaged granddaughter to be a princess with her daughter, Emma Walton
in The Princess Diaries, and its sequel, The Hamilton, to pursue the publishing of
Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement. books committed to stimulating a sense of
Andrews also voiced the character of wonder in children and young readers. The
Queen Lillian in Shrek 2, and she is Julie Andrews Collection, an imprint of
currently reprising her role in Shrek 3, Harper Collins Publishers, was launched in
COURTESY OF THE BILL HARRIS FAMILY
due out in the summer of 2007. October 2003 and has released 22 books to
Andrews’ other motion picture credits date. The Collection includes newly
include The Americanization of Emily, discovered authors and re-purposing
Hawaii, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Star!, books out of print. The Dumpy the Dump
Darling Lili, Torn Curtain and 10, to Truck franchise is currently being readied
name only a few. (with the Sesame Workshop) as a television
Andrews was born and raised in series for PBS, with an initial launch in
England, where she first came to fame as 2007. Andrews and Hamilton’s most recent
a young musical performer on stage and novel, The Great American Mousical, was
on radio. She was still in her teens when released earlier this year to superb reviews
she made her way across the Atlantic and within one week became number
and to Broadway, where she made her seven on the New York Times bestseller list
debut in 1953 in the musical The Boy Friend. She went on to create for children’s books. This whimsical tribute to Broadway is serving as
the role of Eliza Doolittle in Lerner and Loewe’s Broadway inspiration for a newly built revival at Macy’s Thanksgiving Day
musical My Fair Lady in 1956, which became an instant classic and Parade of the Parade’s historic “Storybook” float, which carried
the longest-running musical of its day. Andrews won a New York Andrews and Hamilton in this year’s 80th annual parade on
Drama Critics Award and garnered a Tony November 23.
KEN BERRY AND ANDREWS Andrews received her honors as a Dame of the
nomination for her performance. She received
another Tony nomination in 1961, when she MAKE LIKE ASTAIRE AND British Empire by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on
originated the role of Queen Guinevere in the Lerner ROGERS ON New Year’s Eve 1999 for Lifetime Achievements in the
and Loewe musical Camelot. Thirty-five years later, THE JULIE ANDREWS Arts and Humanities. For her exemplary achievements
Andrews returned to Broadway to star in the 1996 in the performing arts and American culture, she was
stage adaptation of Victor/Victoria. Her career came named a 2001 Kennedy Center Honoree.
full circle last year when she directed a revival of The Boy Friend, As a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations
which toured throughout North America. Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) for 15 years, Andrews
Andrews has also been honored for her work on television, traveled as an advocate for women’s human rights and economic
beginning in 1957 with her Emmy-nominated performance in the security. With her husband, Academy Award-winning filmmaker
title role of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical Cinderella. She Blake Edwards, she is a founding board member of Operation
later won an Emmy for her own musical variety series, The Julie U.S.A., which has provided privately funded worldwide relief
Andrews Hour, and also earned Emmy nominations for Julie and and development assistance since its inception in 1979. Andrews
Carol at Lincoln Center, with her close friend Carol Burnett; her and Edwards, who have been married for nearly 37 years, have five
children and seven grandchildren.
34 | SCREEN ACTOR Winter 2006
Julie, you had your Broadway debut at 19. Do you remember the
COURTESY OF THE BILL HARRIS FAMILY
project which earned you your SAG card?
JULIE ANDREWS: It has to have been something that I did for
television because I didn’t make a feature film until late in 1962.
You became a Broadway and film star at a very early age. What do
you think is the most challenging aspect of handling that kind of
JA: Well, I think probably it remains as true today as it was then, that if ANDREWS received sage advice from the real MARIA VON TRAPP
whose life provided the story line for The Sound of Music.
you’re fortunate enough to be successful as a youngster, there is an
enormous amount of publicity that follows. It’s very challenging for young
people who suddenly find themselves in the spotlight. It’s challenging for
all but the most grounded. I know it toppled me a little bit.
“ I f you help,
Having worked on stage, film and television, do you have a favorite
let’s say, 400,000
JA: No. I just love the fact that I’m allowed to play in all these different
women, then at least
arenas and sandboxes. Stage is such a different medium from film. Stage is
full figure every moment. You really have to think of the total image that
a million children
you’re creating. You’ve the immediate contact with an audience, which is
so exciting. But, I couldn’t say which I prefer. In movies there are full figure
automatically benefit .
shots, but there are, of course, medium shots and close-ups. A movie is a
closer medium which is projected in a very large way.
Do you find that there’s anything that you have to consciously adjust
third world countries
if you go from one to the other? need support
JA: I think the adjustments are small. It’s better to try not to be too busy
on film. At least that’s what I’ve found, especially in close-up shots. I
learned that valuable lesson from Robert Wise when we were doing The
Sound of Music.
Do you have a suggestion for younger actors?
JA: I often say to young actors the chances are that at some point you’re
going to get a break and be very lucky. You had better have done your
homework and be ready. Never stop thinking, learning, watching,
listening. It’s invaluable.
CONTINUED ON PAGE 38
Winter 2006 SCREEN ACTOR | 37
Are there any young, up-and-coming actors that you enjoy watching?
JA: There are too many to mention. It’s really exciting to see the young
talent that is out there. It’s not merely about glamour these days. We’re
seeing true talent. The young stars of today are there for a reason.
James Garner won SAG’s Life Achievement Award a couple of
years ago, and you presented the award. We asked him what was his
favorite film, and Jim said The Americanization of Emily. He loved
Paddy Chayefsky’s script and working with you. Of all the roles you
have played, do you have a favorite?
JA: The Americanization of Emily was one of my favorites also, and I hand
the compliment right back to Jim. Working with him was wonderful. We’ve
LESTER COHEN/WIREIMAGE .COM
done three projects together, and each was such a pleasure. He was, and is,
simply delicious. Other projects? Too many to mention. Obviously some of
the wonderful films that I’ve done with my husband, Blake—in particular,
a little movie called That’s Life, made on a shoestring budget which we shot
in our own home with many of our friends. Everyone contributed. It was
an experimental film and a joy to make.
JULIE ANDREWS and 2004 Life Achievement honoree
How is it to be directed by your husband? JAMES GARNER greet each other backstage at the
11 th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.
JA: It’s great. We talk shorthand, so to speak. Sometimes we discuss
things on the way home after shooting—sometimes I wish he’d pay a little
“ It’s very challenging
more attention to me because he always assumes that I know what he
wants. Sometimes he hasn’t even mentioned it! Plus, it’s a little daunting
when in the middle of a love scene your husband says to you, “That’s fine
darling, but I know you can do it better.” On the whole it’s just terrific.
Blake’s sets are always fun, and he allows his actors a lot of freedom—one
for young people who
feels one is really contributing. In spite of his Hollywood “bad boy” image
(a legend he enjoys), I think he is one of the consummate directors, one
suddenly find themselves
who never shows off with his camera. in the spotlight.
The Life Achievement Award is presented for both career and
humanitarian service. You have donated to so many charities, but
It’s challenging for all but
two of your favorites are Operation USA and the United Nations
UNIFEM. You served as a Goodwill Ambassador.
the most grounded.
JA: Yes, that’s the United Nations Development Fund for Women. I know it toppled me
Why is that important to you? a little bit. ”
JA: It’s very simple. If you help, let’s say, 400,000 women, then at least a
million children automatically benefit. Mothers in third world countries
need support, education and empowerment. They’re considered
subordinate human beings in so many places—the Congo and Southeast
Asia for example. I loved being an ambassador for UNIFEM. Operation
USA is a wonderful, small, but important relief organization that has done
phenomenal work around the world and donated millions of dollars in
high priority relief. Another organization that Blake and I heartily endorse
is the Foundation for Heredity Disease. Its main mission is to help find a
cure for Huntington’s disease. It’s a “marker” disease. If they find the cure
to that one, so many others will topple. CONTINUED ON PAGE 41
38 | SCREEN ACTOR Winter 2006
The Screen Actors Guild Foundation has a national literacy
program. You are a wife, a mother and a grandmother, and
you’ve written 17 books. Obviously you feel strongly about
JA: I feel there’s a great place in this world for television and film,
and all the electronic games and gizmos that entertain children and
keep them occupied and make a mother’s life easier when she has
so much to do. But if it’s at the expense of reading, and a child is
watching television 90 percent of the time, then it’s being spoon-fed
and the child is not being asked to really engage or use its brain or
participate in any way. If a child hasn’t learned to read properly, then
that child is going to really miss out on some important essentials in
You have received many awards including an Oscar, four
Golden Globes and an Emmy. You have been honored at the
Kennedy Center and named a Dame of the British Empire by
PHOTOS: COURTESY OF THE BILL HARRIS FAMILY
the Queen. How do you feel about receiving the Screen Actors
Guild’s Life Achievement Award?
JA: I’ll tell you exactly how I feel. My, I never could have imagined
this in a million years. To be honored by one’s peers is just
phenomenal. I’m blessed. And very, very grateful. It’s a little
Julie Andrews spoke with Kathy Connell for Screen Actor.
(ABOVE AND RIGHT) ANDREWS on her ABC variety show,
THE JULIE ANDREWS HOUR.
Winter 2006 SCREEN ACTOR | 41