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Tom Hanks’ Mister Rogers Movie Gets a New Title

This year marked the 50-year anniversary of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. The beloved educational series created and hosted by the late Fred Rogers ran from the late ’60s until 2001. It’s known for being warm, friendly, and uplifting. When you have a host regularly reminding you that you can make each day a special day just by being yourself (something both kids and adults need to hear and take to heart), you make it a point to tune in. And via Deadline, an upcoming biopic about Rogers is in the works with Tom Hanks set for the starring role.

Tom Hanks, a.k.a. America’s dad, as Mister Rogers. I can’t think of a better casting decision.

UPDATE, 12/27/18 – Formerly entitled You Are My Friend, the project has now been retitled, according to Variety, in a manner that evokes Fred Rogers more blatantly. It’s now A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, probably because the documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor used the other signature line from the PBS show’s theme song, and it did quite well for itself, having landed on the Academy shortlist for Best Documentary.

UPDATE, 9/27/18 – And now, we have our first look at Hanks as everybody’s friendliest neighbor. On Thursday, Sony Pictures tweeted out an image of Hanks wearing Fred Rogers’ patented red sweater, tidy sneakers, and folksy smile. Take a look, and try not to utter an, “Aw shucks.”

You Are My Friend, which also stars Matthew Rhys and Chris Cooper, is scheduled to hit theaters in October 2019. Keep your chin up until then!

1/29/18 – You Are My Friend was developed by Noah Harpster and Micah Fitzerman-Blue. The story is inspired by what happened when journalist Tom Junod was assigned an article by Esquire to write about Rogers; a friendship formed between the two and the cynical Junod’s perspective of the world was changed. Junod wrote his piece about Rogers 20 years ago, but Esquire recently republished it online.

The film will be directed by Marille Heller and is scheduled to kick off production in fall 2018.

Can you think of anyone more suited to play Fred Rogers than Tom Hanks? Go to the comments and share your thoughts about this casting.

Images: Disney, PBS

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