Tom Hanks, would you be our, could you be our neighbor?
Yes, he could, and with gusto. Hanks takes on the iconic role of Fred Rogers in the upcoming A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, and if we didn’t know any better, we’d say the TV host came back to life to play himself in the upcoming movie.
The film is meant to explore Rogers’ life, but it isn’t one that recounts his rise to stardom or how he became a household name across the country. With director Marielle Heller’s help, Hanks is meant to weave a story exploring Rogers’ “real-life friendship” with journalist Tom Junod (Matthew Rhys).
Junod is assigned to write a profile of Rogers and in the process, according to the movie’s official synopsis, “overcomes his skepticism, learning about empathy, kindness, and decency from America’s most beloved neighbor.” Whew, hose tears are already pricking our eyes. From what we’ve seen so far with the first footage, it looks like Hanks settled in to playing Rogers pretty perfectly.
Part of it, according to an interview with Heller via Entertainment Weekly, was due to Hanks donning some of Rogers’ real clothing. He was known for a wide variety of different sweaters, all made by his mother, that he would change into at the beginning of each episode. Hanks is wearing said sweaters, as well as ties, as they were offered up via Joanne, Rogers’ late wife. It’s a perfect storm of factors that work together to make Hanks an excellent candidate for bringing the character to life.
Can’t wait to see it all come together? The movie is scheduled to debut on November 22, so you can enjoy your holiday Thanksgiving dinner and check out Mr. Rogers on the big screen. That way, you’ve got plenty of time to pick out the best outfit possible to wear to the premiere. Neatness counts.