LOS ANGELES — Life has been less than a jolly holiday for the star of the movie classics “Mary Poppins” and “The Sound of Music” since the death of her husband, director Blake Edwards.

“I think every day it’s a struggle right now,” says Julie Andrews, Edwards’ soul mate for 41 years. Edwards (“Breakfast at Tiffany’s”) died from complications of pneumonia in December. He was 88; Andrews is 75. The two were married and worked together for most of the British actress’ five decades in Hollywood.

They first teamed for a big-budget dud, the 1970 musical flop, “Darling Lili.” Eventually, though, Edwards and Andrews would deliver big-screen successes: the 1979 box-office smash “10,” the biting 1981 Hollywood satire “S.O.B.” and their Oscar-nominated 1982 musical “Victor/Victoria” – which Andrews called some of the best work in her career. There was also “That’s Life,” which the couple made in 1986, “which was such a joy,” she says.

Life after Edwards’ passing began with something of a party, attended by friends, family and Hollywood pals. “It was a good memorial,” Andrews recalls in an interview. “It was. I wanted it to be fun. And I didn’t want it to be maudlin or sad, because Blake wouldn’t have wanted that.”

She has forged ahead professionally, adding to her long list of children’s books with the recently published “The Very Fairy Princess Takes the Stage.”

McCartney gets engaged to VP of freight firm

LOS ANGELES – Paul McCartney is engaged to girlfriend Nancy Shevell, the New York woman he’s been dating since 2007, his rep confirmed Friday.

“We’re all thrilled for him,” the singer’s publicist told the Associated Press, declining to give further details about the proposal.

This will be the third marriage for the cute Beatle, now 68. McCartney’s first wife, photographer, musician and activist Linda McCartney, died of cancer in 1998. His second marriage, to model, activist and eventual “Dancing With the Stars” contestant Heather Mills, ended in a $49-million divorce in 2008. Mills and McCartney had separated in May 2006.

Described in some reports as a “New York socialite” – she and McCartney met in the Hamptons – Shevell, 51, is vice president of administration for New England Motor Freight Inc. and the Shevell Group of Companies, based in New Jersey and run by her father, Myron “Mike” Shevell. She’s also a board member for New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority, with a term expiring in June.

McCartney and Shevell “have the right chemistry,” a source told People. “They’re both cool, chilled out and optimistic.”

It’s a second marriage for Shevell, who has a teenage son. She and New York lawyer Bruce Blakeman separated in 2007 after more than 20 years together; their reportedly amicable divorce was final in December 2008.

McCartney has five children, including one, 7-year-old Beatrice, with Mills.

Arnold is still a hot property in Hollywood

LOS ANGELES — Arnold Schwarzenegger has added another project on his to-do list as he returns to Hollywood after serving as California governor.

Schwarzenegger spokesman Alan Mendelsohn said Thursday that the actor plans to star in the drama “Cry Macho” for Academy Award-winning producer Albert Ruddy (“The Godfather,” “Million Dollar Baby”).

It’s one of several projects Schwarzenegger has in the works, including a “Terminator” tale and the crime saga “The Last Stand.”

Mendelsohn said the timing has not yet been worked out among the various projects, so it’s not certain which might be Schwarzenegger’s first big-screen film after leaving the governor’s office in January.