Is Meryl Streep Dead In ‘Mamma Mia’ Sequel? Summer’s Biggest Movie Secret Revealed

For months, the theories have been running rampant over what happens to Meryl Streep’s character in the sequel to ‘Mamma Mia’. Now, the time has come for the truth: Is she dead?

When the trailer for Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again dropped earlier this year, fans were immediately taken aback by the complete and utter lack of screen time by the divine Meryl Streep. Considering that the sequel focuses on her character Donna Sheridan’s past, it seemed strange that there was no sign of her in the present. It immediately led many to speculate that her character had died, though no one from the film was willing to confirm or deny. But now, we know for sure, having seen the film in a sneak peek before the official opening on July 20th…

SPOILER ALERT — yes, she’s gone. I know, sad faces all around — but the worst of it is, we never exactly find out how she died. We find out when — Donna’s daughter’s boyfriend Sky let’s it slip that she’s been gone a year from when the movie picks up — but no one ever explains what took down the most vivacious and charming character in musical history. It’s a truth that the audience struggles with right along with the rest of the characters in the film. Rosie, played by Julie Waters, actually bursts out into tears every time someone even mentions Donna’s name. (Same, Rosie, Same.)

But all is not completely lost for those who were on board for Here We Go Again simply to hear Meryl sing. She does show up (read our review to find out when), and perhaps, more importantly, you’ll actually become equally invested in Lily James with this film, who plays Donna in her younger years. She brings all the same energy and charisma to the role as Meryl did — and she’s pretty damn good singer, too!

And don’t worry: though the film does spend a good amount of time exploring how grief has affected the people Donna has left behind, it also perfectly shows how spectacular life can be when one has music, love, and Cher for a grandmother. Oh yeah, her numbers are worth the price of admission, too.

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