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Tom Hanks will play beloved public television personality Mister Rogers in an upcoming movie.
Variety reported the Oscar winner will play Fred Rogers in a story that is loosely based on Rogers’ friendship with journalist Tom Junod. The movie, called “You Are My Friend,” will show how Junod, a cynical journalist, begrudgingly takes an assignment to write a profile on Rogers. He gains a different perspective on life in the process, according to The Hollywood Reporter. TriStar pictures has distribtion rights to the film.
Junod called the news of the movie being made “well-timed.”
“It is finally happening, and in the best of ways: a movie, very loosely based on the article I wrote for Esquire 20 years ago, with Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers, two innovative screenwriters from ‘Transparency’ scripting, and Marielle Heller directing,” he wrote on Twitter.
It is finally happening, and in the best of ways: a movie, very loosely based on the article I wrote for @Esquire 20 years ago, with Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers, two innovative screenwriters from "Transparency" scripting, and Marielle Heller directing. Well-timed, for this moment. https://t.co/JWsOCmL6XB— Tom Junod (@TomJunod) January 29, 2018
“I’m thrilled to be making ‘You Are My Friend,’” Heller said in a statement. “The script knocked me out with its message of kindness and its exploration of the human spirit. As a mother, I am so inspired by the teachings of Fred Rogers and as a human, I am in awe of his life’s work. I can’t wait to bring his story to the public and be a part of such a thoughtful, smart group of people who are all coming together to make this film, which truly feels to me like an antidote to our very fractured culture.”
Production on “You Are My Friend” is set to start this fall.