Trivia for A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood
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- Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris were attached to direct the movie.
- Tom Hanks and his son, Colin Hanks, have both played Fred Rogers. Tom Hanks in this film, and Colin Hanks in Drunk History (2013)
- Tom Hanks's son Colin Hanks previously played Fred Rogers in Underdogs (2018).
- Emmy Award winner Jim Emswiller fell from a balcony around 7.30pm on October 12, 2018 during a break in filming in Mount Lebanon, Pennsylvania, authorities say. The 61-year-old Pittsburgh man died later at a hospital. Emswiller was involved in the sound production of the film. Mount Lebanon police say Emswiller fell over a brick wall on the balcony at an apartment building. A dedication of this movie to Emswiller appears in the closing credits.
- According to producers, and contrary to early belief, the film is not a biopic of Fred Rogers. Rather the film centers around journalist Tom Junod and his experience interviewing Rogers, and the impact it had on him.
- On Friday, January 25, 2019, Sony Pictures announced that they would be pushing the film's release date back from October 18, 2019 to November 22, 2019.
- In a scene in the feature film The 'Burbs (1989), Tom Hanks's character Ray Peterson is watching a television episode of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood (1968). Thirty years later, Tom Hanks would go on to portray Fred Rogers in this feature film.
- Fred Rogers' widow, Joanne Rogers, has stated that Tom Hanks is the perfect actor to play her late husband.
- Tom Hanks and Matthew Rhys previously starred together in The Post (2017).
- Marielle Heller is longtime friends with Tom Hanks' son Colin, and met the former at a birthday party in which she pitched him the project. Heller claimed that access was fortunate because Hanks had put out the word through his agency that he wanted a break from playing real-life people and to not send him those scripts.
- This is the eighth film where Tom Hanks has portrayed a real life person.
- The title of the film is (A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood) while in the lyrics for the song during the opening Mister Rogers' Neighborhood are, " It's a beautiful day in this neighborhood..." likely an intentionally decision and not a misquote.
- During the TIFF post-film panel, Tom Hanks mentions how he wishes he and his son (Colin) at 3 years old watched a half hour of Mr. Rogers a week so he could learn that it is okay to be sad. Hanks feels children don't learn the importance of expressing emotions from a young age and Mr. Rogers did an excellent job explaining this
- The writers said the film took so long to be made because they worked with the estate tirelessly to ensure the accuracy of the film. They were given access to the archives to ensure it was "right". "Once we found Mari it happened" they mentioned, feeling she was the final piece of the puzzle
- Tom Hanks revealed he first heard about the film 10 years ago and read the script 8 years ago
- Tom Hanks's son, Colin Hanks, previously played Mr. Rogers in an episode of "Drunk History", dramatizing the time Rogers spoke before a Senate Committe to defend federal funding for PBS: Underdogs (2018).
- The puppets used in the film are not the originals but instead are meticulous recreations by the puppet makers for Sesame Street. The director confirmed this during the 2019 London Film Festival.
- This movie is based on the article "Can You Say...'Hero'?" by Tom Junod, which was published in the November 1, 1998, issue of Esquire Magazine. In 2019, before the release of this film, Junod wrote an article in The Atlantic that was partly about this process. It started, "A long time ago, a man of resourceful and relentless kindness saw something in me that I didn't see in myself. He trusted me when I thought I was untrustworthy, and took an interest in me that went beyond my initial interest in him. He was the first person I ever wrote about who became my friend, and our friendship endured until he died. Now a movie has been made from the story I wrote about him, which is to say "inspired by" the story I wrote about him, which is to say that in the movie my name is Lloyd Vogel and I get into a fistfight with my father at my sister's wedding. I did not get into a fistfight with my father at my sister's wedding. My sister didn't have a wedding."
- "Mister Roger's Neighborhood" started on WQED in Pittsburgh as "Children's Corner," with the host being Josie Carey. Fred Rogers was the producer. The show already had King Friday XIII and several other of the well-known characters. Ms. Carey wrote several major song lyrics including the then-well known "Good Night, God," to end the show. The show targeted very young children (3-4), offering membership in the "Tame Tiger" organization. A tiger outline was available by mail; kids could fill in a stripe for every good deed they did. When Josie Carey left the show to get married, Fred Rogers took over the lead role and "Mister Rogers Neighborhood" was born, with largely the same puppet characters, but targeting a slightly older, but still pre-school, audience (4-6).
- Days before the film premiered, ancestry confirmed Tom Hanks and Fred Rogers are actually sixth-cousins.
- The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Tom Hanks, Chris Cooper, and Christine Lahti.
- During the scene in the Chinese restaurant, Joanne Rogers and David Newell a.k.a Mr McFeely are shown as diners in the restaurant.
- Mr. Rogers actually swam his laps in the nude. However, to keep the rating at PG, they showed him swimming in a bathing suit instead.
- Mr. McFeely was an actual character in Mister Roger's Neighborhood, famous for his catchphrase, "Speedy Delivery". In "Cast Away", Tom Hanks played a character concerned with the speed of deliveries with FedEx.
- Every location change in the movie was depicted with a scaled down model of each place, much like in an episode of "Mister Roger's Neighborhood" whenever Mr. Rogers himself goes from his house to another location.
- Lloyd's brother-in-law asking Mr. Rogers about what rifle he used was based on an internet urban legend that Rogers fought in the Vietnam war.
- Mr Rogers wife and the actor who originally portrayed Mr McFeely are both extras during the restaurant scene.
- Tom Hanks was given Fred Rogers's ties to wear by his wife Joanne.
- During production, Marielle Heller insisted on the cast and crew working "French hours" (an industry term which means a 10-hour day without a break for lunch). She did this so she would be able to get home in time to get her son to sleep. She also did this out of respect to Fred Rogers, since she believed he would not want the cast and crew overworked to a point where they could not spend time with their families.
- In an interview on CBS This Morning, Tom Hanks described playing Fred Rogers as "terrifying" due to Rogers' immense cultural and social influence. He credited Joanne Rogers, who served as a consultant on the film, with helping him to craft an honest and believable representation of her late husband. Joanne also gave Hanks several of Fred's neckties which Hanks wore in the film.
- Actors Tom Hanks and Chris Cooper share the same birthday (July 9).
- The working title of the movie was, "You Are My Friend".
- Many archival footage of Mr. Rogers on famous talk shows had been edited with swapping in Tom Hanks instead. This also occurred in Forrest Gump (1994) with adding Gump to specific historical scenes.
- Director Marielle Heller said during the 2019 London Film Festival that Hanks' extended look at the camera in the restaurant scene was the first artistic decision she made on the film. The script had this down as just a moment, where you couldn't be certain if he was looking at the audience. Heller prolonged this, making sure viewers knew he's looking at you.
- Both Joanne Rogers, Fred's widow, and David Newell, the actor who played Mr. McFeely, are shown as two of the people in the restaurant scene.