A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood is a 2019 American drama film directed by Marielle Heller and written by Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster, inspired by the 1998 article “Can You Say … Hero?” by Tom Junod, published in Esquire. The film stars Tom Hanks, Matthew Rhys, Susan Kelechi Watson, and Chris Cooper. It depicts Lloyd Vogel (Rhys), a journalist for Esquire who is assigned to profile beloved television icon Fred Rogers (Hanks).
It received positive reviews from critics, with particular praise for Hanks’ and Rhys’ performances, Marielle Heller’s direction, and the heart-warming messages, and has earned over $58 million. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood was chosen by Time magazine as one of the ten best films of the year.For his work, Hanks was nominated at the Golden Globes, Critics’ Choice, and Screen Actors Guild Awards.
The creator and host of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. To prepare for his role, Hanks visited the Fred Rogers Center at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania for research in the Fred Rogers Archives and also watched Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, a 2018 documentary film. At the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival, Hanks recalled watching “hundreds of hours” of footage of Rogers on set and behind the scenes in order to get into character.Director Marielle Heller noted that Rogers “doesn’t have the dynamic nature you need for a protagonist for a movie” and considered him “the antagonist […] who comes into someone’s life and flips it upside down through his philosophy and the way he lived his life”.
A jaded journalist who is assigned to profile Rogers for the magazine Esquire. Lloyd is based loosely on journalist Tom Junod, whose encounter with Rogers was adapted into the film. Heller described Lloyd as the viewer’s “entry point into Fred’s teachings” and expressed hope that Lloyd’s character development and growth as a new father would compel viewers to reflect upon themselves.