Trying to fill a more experienced actor’s shoes is scary enough, so we can only imagine what Lily James was experiencing on the Mamma Mia 2 set where the shoes she had to fill were Meryl Streep’s — and, to top it off, they were probably ABBA-style platform pleather boots. James plays a younger version of Streep’s character in the upcoming sequel, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, and this week she confirmed to Seth Meyers that, yep, playing a younger Donna is just as terrifying as you think it would be.
Lily James has been busy lately, appearing in the buzzy Baby Driver earlier this year, the Winston Churchill biopic Darkest Hour in theaters now, and shooting Mamma Mia 2 off the coast of Greece. During their chat on Meyers’ show, the late night host asked whether it was more stressful to play Churchill’s secretary or a younger Streep. James said the latter, obvi.
MERYL *IS* MERYL.
It’s not that we wouldn’t want to do a movie with Meryl, or have the honor of playing one of her characters — she would be a delight to meet IRL and we all know it. It’s just that when you’re talking about one of the world’s greatest living actresses, there can be just a teensy bit of pressure to get it just right, you know? And she didn’t even mention the fact that fellow legend Cher was also on set at some point.
It’s clear from the rest of her chat with Meyers that Lily James dedicated herself to the Mamma Mia shoot to the point where she broke a toe in the process. So, that’s commitment. We’re sure Streep was proud.