Of the 100 billion people to ever exist throughout humankind, few individuals are genuinely wise, respectful and caring quite like Fred Rogers. A wonderful television producer and not too surprisingly an excellent musician and Presbyterian minister as well, Mr. Rogers became a staple in almost every American household. He had a unique way of discussing  subjects like divorce, the ups and downs of parenting, and lessons to be learned when handling these two sets of situations. Along with his long-running, universally loved “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood”, he was also an amazing educator and advocate of the positive use of public television.
Apart from his illustrious career in both television and music, he was nothing short of one of the most caring and compassionate people on Earth. Never once did anything he’d communicate seem scripted or rehearsed; rather it was spoken directly from the softest spot in his heart. His signature glowing optimism mixed with deep wisdom on trials and tribulations of life, produced a positive impact on the lives of anyone with a beating heart.
Another funny yet so touching quality of Mr. Rogers was that he ate an entirely vegetarian diet because he famously “didn’t want to eat anything with a mother.” He was a kind and benevolent man in every possible sense; his final episode of “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood” on August 31, 2001 struck a bittersweet chord in everyone.

An image of Fred Rogers from the TV program "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood"

Fred Rogers (esquire)

“I’m just so proud of all of you who have grown up with us.” Rogers said smiling.
“I would like to tell you what I often told you when you were much younger. I like you just the way you are. And what’s more, I’m so grateful to you for helping the children in your life to know that you’ll do everything you can to keep them safe. And to help them express their feelings in ways that will bring healing in many different neighborhoods. It’s such a good feeling to know that we’re lifelong friends.”

Tell me that’s not beautiful.
At the end of January, TriStar Pictures announced that their biopic about Rogers, “You Are My Friend”, will star one of the sweetest men in Hollywood and a man adored for his charming and friendly nature, Mr. Tom Hanks himself.
The “Captain Phillips” and “Forrest Gump” star has a well-known reputation of being both relatable and respectful; his personality is the reason Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson declared Hanks to be his vice president when Johnson announced his own presidential candidacy on Saturday Night Live last May.
Detailing the friendship of Mr. Rogers with a cynical and perpetually negative journalist Tom Junod, the story will portray how Junod’s life was changed by the lessons and teachings of Rogers while doing a story about him. According to Variety, although Junod claimed on Twitter that the upcoming film is only “loosely based” on his experiences with Rogers, he’s shown great excitement about the project.
The biopic will be directed by “The Diary of a Teenage Girl” director Marielle Heller, who told Variety about her passion for the project, particularly given how much Rogers inspired her about motherhood. I, like many people, grew up on Fred Rogers and his teachings. I can’t wait to see the final product and explore his legacy further.

Are you excited about “You Are My Friend”? Tell me on Twitter at @CaptainKasoff.