At a time of great division in the U.S., a little bit of Mr. Rogers can go a long way to remind us of simpler times.
And people appear to be ready to reflect on the PBS icon: Fred Rogers has gotten a lot of attention over the past few years.
The PBS documentary “Mister Rogers: It’s You I Like” kicked off the trend in spring 2018. Hosted by actor Michael Keaton (who briefly worked with Rogers at PBS station WQED in Pittsburgh), the film was nominated for two primetime Emmy Awards.
In June 2018, “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” hit theaters after making its debut at the Sundance Film Festival. The documentary by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Morgan Neville is the highest-grossing biographical documentary of all time, reportedly earning more than $20 million at the box office. The film won a number of awards and was chosen as one of Time magazine’s top 10 films of 2018.
Finally, TriStar Pictures and Sony Pictures released “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” this fall. Playing the role of Rogers is two-time Academy Award winner Tom Hanks, who’s been nominated for best supporting actor by both the Screen Actors Guild and the Golden Globes. On the movie review site Rotten Tomatoes, the film gained positive reviews from 95% of the 270 film critics who registered their views.
Rogers paid a visit to WTTW in 1985 and sat down with original “Chicago Tonight” host John Callaway to talk about his work and career.