When The Sound of Music hit theaters in 1965, everyone wanted to join the ranks of the Von Trapp family and sing with Julie Andrews in that massive mansion. The film was an instant classic, and audiences were excited to accompany the family on their journey of bonding through music. But now, the performers behind our favorite characters have grown up and taken some interesting turns — here’s what the unforgettable cast did with their lives.

The youngest of the Von Trapp family left acting behind to create the Aurelia Foundation, an organization dedicated to helping adults with disabilities. She also found work as a print model in Paris.

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The fame The Sound of Music brought Chase actually directed him down a different career path than many of his co-stars. He earned a degree in geology and developed software for a geology company.

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Spending so much time in the Austrian mountains helped Turner grow a passion for skiing, and she made a career out of it. However, she’s since become a popular floral designer.

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A handsome 90 years old in 2020, Plummer brought home an Academy Award for supporting actor thanks to his role in Beginners. He recently appeared in the British-Canadian TV series called Departure.

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She was the eldest sibling of the Von Trapp family, and she sang the memorable tune “Sixteen Going on Seventeen.” Carr eventually wrote two books about her experience on set before passing away in 2016.

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Prior to The Sound of Music, Hammond already had a pretty impressive film resume, including Lord of the Flies. His success only skyrocketed with this film, highlighted by a recent role in Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood.

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Perhaps the biggest brush with fame Menzies experienced in the years after The Sound of Music was a photo spread in Playboy. But she was also married to actor and producer Robert Urich before her passing in 2017.

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Cartwright began her acting career at age three, and after The Sound of Music, she had a big role in the iconic cult series Lost in Space. She also found work as a professional photographer.

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Chances are, you know exactly what Julia Andrews looks like. How couldn’t you? She’s only won an Academy Award, a BAFTA, five Golden Globes, three Grammys, and two Emmys since her Sound days. Not long ago, she launched a podcast called called Julie’s Library, where she reads books to kids.

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Parker lived to the ripe age of 91 before passing away from complications from pneumonia. Before she was even cast in The Sound of Music, she had three Oscar nominations.

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For a man who played such an iconic role, Haydn was never one to bask in the limelight of Hollywood stardom. After playing Max Detweiler, Haydn actually lent his voice to several cartoons.

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Wood was a beloved actress long before meeting the Von Trapp family, with a stage career that spanned six decades. She was known for her amazing accents and worked tirelessly until the ’70s.

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After the filming of The Sound of Music was complete, Truhitte actually enlisted in the United States Marines for a number of years. He only starred in one more short film in 2017.

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Lee went on to snag a number of roles roles in the years after The Sound of Music, including spending 24 years on General Hospital. She held the role until 2004, when she passed away.

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It’s fascinating the career path each child took after their iconic role. But, you don’t have to look at their post-movie lives to find interesting tidbits of info. The Sound of Music itself was chock-full of them!

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“Edelweiss,” in which Captain Von Trapp serenades the flower of his native Austria, stands out as an iconic tune. Most viewers assume it’s a classic Austrian folk song, but that’s not the case! Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote it specifically for the play.

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Though the film remains a favorite in the United States, Austrians themselves never really got into it! There are official Sound of Music tours, but those cater almost exclusively to international tourists.


Actress Charmian Carr had to endure a ton of pain during her “16 Going on 17” dance number. After slipping through a glass pane and hurting her leg, she had to wrap up her ankle in bandages for the remainder of the scene.

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Although he later befriended Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer was sour on set. He said working with Julie was like “being hit over the head with a big Valentine’s Day card” and mocked the super sentimental film as “The Sound of Mucus.”

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The film version of the Von Trapp’s lives took some creative liberties. It portrays Maria as a gentle caretaker who breaks the children out of a military lifestyle. In reality, she was far more strict and took more authority over the family than her eventual husband.

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Have you ever wanted to see 007 go undercover as a musical superstar? That James Bond mission hasn’t come to pass, but studio heads did eye Sean Connery for the role of Captain Von Trapp.

The real Von Trapps didn’t mountain climb out of Austria (though it did make for a good movie ending). They left in the usual fashion just before the country’s borders were sealed, and the United States welcomed them in as refugees.

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Generations of film buffs know and love Liesl, Friedrich, Louisa, Kurt, Brigitta, Marta, and Gretl. Little do they know that all the Von Trapp kids’ names were changed for the film! The real ones were Rupert, Agathe, Maria, Werner, Hedwig, Johanna, and Martina.

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One famous face you won’t see in behind-the-scenes photos is the real Maria Von Trapp! Director Robert Wise said she bossed around the cast and crew, so he kept her at a distance. Filmmakers also neglected to invite her to the premiere!

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Richard Dreyfuss nearly got a chance to indulge his musical side long before Mr. Holland’s Opus. As a boy, the actor nearly won the role of Friedrich, but it turned out he couldn’t dance for his life. That led casting directors to say, “So long, farewell.”


Think making movies is easy? Well, for the famous opening scene, Julie Andrews had to repeatedly run up a mountainside! She also had nothing more than a light dress to wear during hours and hours of standing outside on an unseasonably cold spring day.

The Sound of Music has the distinction of winning the Oscar for Best Picture and the Tony for Best Musical. Only three other productions matched this feat: My Fair LadyA Man for All Seasons, and Amadeus.


Maria first shared her incredible story in the 1949 bestseller The Story of the Trapp Family Singers. However, she unwittingly sold away the film rights for the book, meaning that the Von Trapps never collected any direct profits from The Sound of Music.


The classic film had a quasi-remake with The Sound of Music Live! NBC broadcast, a live staging of the musical play headlined by American Idol star Carrie Underwood. While it brought in huge ratings, critics felt generally underwhelmed.

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Not all the characters in The Sound of Music were based on fact. Writers completely invented Rolf, Liesl’s love interest who falls in with the Germans, to add another dramatic storyline to the musical.

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Debbie Turner, who played Marta, kept having baby teeth fall out during production. To keep her mouth from looking different each take, filmmakers had to supply her with false teeth.


Both Maria and Georg Von Trapp admitted they had absolutely no romantic feelings for each other at first. But unlike in the movie, they got married long before they fled Austria — 11 years, in fact!

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However, sparks did fly when certain cast members first met. Despite playing father and daughter, Christopher Plummer and Charmian Carr had a mutual attraction. Keeping things professional, they never let their relationship go beyond flirting.

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Captain Von Trapp wasn’t the only role that almost had a different actor. Primarily a stage performer, Julie Andrews was pretty green when it came to film. Studio heads wanted a big name like Doris Day — who did cover the title song a few years earlier.

Mary Poppins hadn’t yet debuted in theaters during the filming of The Sound of Music. So when Julie Andrews entertained the child actors between takes by singing “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” they thought she was making it up! Of course, Julie’s magical nanny has a history every bit as fascinating as that of Maria Von Trapp.


In a 2017 interview, Julie Andrews revealed she nearly died on set. While attached to a wire for a flying scene, the stunt crew accidentally lost control and sent her plummeting to the stage below. Julie brushed herself off like a pro and moved to the next take.


We all remember Dick Van Dyke as Bert, the lovable chimney sweep, but did you realize he plays a second role? He also won the part of the elderly Mr. Dawes — only after paying Walt Disney $4,000 for the privilege!

At first, Julie Andrews wouldn’t commit to the titular role in Mary Poppins, as she was hoping to play Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady. She took the Disney offer, of course, after Audrey Hepburn won the part.

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Songwriter Roger Sherman’s son inspired the title of “A Spoonful of Sugar.” He told his dad about receiving polio medicine, which he didn’t mind because it was hidden inside a cube of sugar on a spoon.


Walt Disney personally cast Julie Andrews, and it was her feature film debut! She impressed him during a stage performance of the musical Camelot, in which she portrayed Queen Guinevere.

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“Feed the Birds” famously romanticized the scattering of birdseed outside St. Paul’s Cathedral. However, don’t expect to recreate the scene today. The church has outlawed the practice after the amount of bird poop in the area got out of control.

As beloved as the film is, many viewers simply can’t stand Dick Van Dyke clumsy cockney cadence. Strangely enough, when playing Mr. Dawes, he showed off a perfectly serviceable British accent.


According to the Sherman Brothers, who wrote the film’s music, the kite represents the Banks family. Though it is broken at the start, its four pieces — one for each Banks member — come together and soar by the end.

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A close look at the nannies lined up outside the Banks’ home will reveal that many of them are men in drag. That’s because these actors are stunt men, brought in for when Mary Poppins blows them all into the distance moments later.

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By total coincidence, Disney shot 2001’s Princess Diaries  on the exact same soundstage as Mary Poppins. They later decided to honor the common link between the projects by dubbing it “Julie Andrews Stage 2.”


Karen Dotrice and Matthew Garber, who played the Banks children, worked together in two other films in the 1960s. They appeared in The Three Lives of Thomasina as well as The Gnome-Mobile.

Believe it or not, Disney did not necessarily coin the word “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.” It appeared in a newspaper in 1931, and a variation of it also served as the title of a song in 1949.

It took the crew an entire week to film the big dance number “Step in Time.” Then, they had to do it all over again. This is because a scratch was found in the original film reel, rendering it useless.


Author P.L. Travers, who wrote the Mary Poppins book series, absolutely despised the film version and its many creative liberties. As a result, she blocked the development of any stage musical or film sequels in her lifetime.

As we know now, a sequel finally did arrive in 2018 in the form of Mary Poppins Returns. This time around, Emily Blunt took on the heroic nanny. Julie Andrews did receive an offer to cameo in the film, but politely turned it down.

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However, a few of the original cast members reappeared in the sequel. Most notably, Dick Van Dyke played Mr. Dawes Jr. Even in his 90s, he pulled off some pretty impressive dances moves, most of them on top of a desk.

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Years after the movie’s release, Disney archivist Dave Smith searched endlessly for the St. Paul’s snow globe prop. It turned out to be in the possession of a janitor who found it in a trash can!


Filmmakers realized they needed a good reason why Mrs. Banks paid so little attention to their children. Based on its setting in the early 1900s, they chose to make her a part of the women’s suffrage movement.

On Oscars night, Mary Poppins took home five awards, the most of any Disney film. In addition to Best Editing, Visual Effects, Original Song, and Score, the movie’s own Julie Andrews won Best Actress in a Leading Role.

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Memorable as he was in the film, Bert does not appear at all in the novels. Instead, the filmmakers combined several book characters to create him. These include Bert the Matchman and a chimney sweep who frequently appears in the background.