For those of us who were fortunate enough to watch Fred Rogers during our more formative years, there’s a good possibility that we were totally unaware that we were witnessing something truly rare. Mister Rogers’ Neighorhood was more than visits from neighborhood figures and trolley trips to Make-Believe; it was one of the few bastions of unmitigated kindness from a man who just exuded good. When it was initially revealed that Tom Hanks would portray the late TV personality in a film based on a true story, there was a collective sense of “Ah, so this is what ideal casting looks like.” In the first trailer for TriStar Pictures’ A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood, Hanks can be seen singing the iconic theme of the long-running educational children’s series and honestly, when was the last time you had a good cry? This might be the time.
The film is loosely based on a 1998 article published in Esquire. Lloyd Vogel (Matthew Rhys) is a journalist who is tasked with profiling Fred Rogers and approaches the assignment with a relatable amount of cynicism. The brief snippet shows how Rogers’ inspired kindness around him, and how his benevolence was not a product of superhuman ability, but of the belief that everyone is “precious.” Either way, if the scene of everyone singing “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” to him on the train doesn’t jump-start your dead heart in some way, then what the hell will?
It’ll be A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood and in theaters when the film premieres November 22.