Promotion for Mary Poppins Returns is currently underway, with stars Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda lighting up late-night talk shows with talk of the long-anticipated follow-up to the 1964 Disney classic. All of the hype for new Mary Poppins has us thinking a lot about pop culture nannies, from the whimsical umbrella-flying types to the in-way-over-their-head kind. Nannies are a special kind of character, adding delight and wonder to the lives of the children they care for. In honor of Mary Poppins Returns, we’ve assembled a list of some of our favorite movie nanniesâ€”the kinds of characters we wish had watched over us when we were young.
Mary Poppins from Mary Poppins
Annie Braddock from The Nanny Diaries
Scarlett Johansson is delightful in this 2007 rom-com, based on the book by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus. Annie is a recent NYU college grad trying to make ends meet when she takes on a nannying gig for the spoiled child of a wealthy family. Their bond becomes the magical formula for The Nanny Diaries, a movie that also stars Chris Evans as Annie’s love interest, making it a pseudo-Avengers prequel.
Nanny McPhee from Nanny McPhee
Chessy from The Parent Trap
Hallie’s nanny Chessy from the 1998 version of The Parent Trap is the perfect nanny. Who can forget the scene when she first realizes Hallie and Annie have switched places? The premise of purposely separating twins at birth is pretty messed up, but this moment was able to totally sell the idea in a believable, emotional way. Chessy also gets the guyâ€”Annie’s butler Martinâ€”in the end!
Aibileen Clark from The Help
Mrs. Doubtfire from Mrs. Doubtfire
Ole Golly from Harriet the Spy
Who didn’t want a nanny like Ole growing up? Rosie O’Donnell is great as Harriet’s writing mentor and dearest friend; Ole is an encouraging, spirited influence who helps Harriet become a better person and writer. She also knows when Harriet has outgrown her company, which makes for a heartbreaking farewell but is a moment that cements her as one of the all-time great cinematic nannies.
Maria from The Sound of Music
Shane Wolfe from The Pacifier
Vin Diesel is always wonderful, but we have a real soft spot for him in this 2005 comedy. As an undercover Navy Seal, Shane makes for an unlikely childhood companion, but he is soon won over by the Plummer children, learning valuable life lessons about love along the way.
Jane Eyre from Jane Eyre