18.06.01 Meet Mr. Rogers

June 1, 2018
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He was a man in a cardigan who accepted you just the way you are. But how much do you know about Fred Rogers?

A new documentary pulls back the curtain on the unlikely TV star – 50 years after “Neighborhood” aired.

Flip: the true story

Yes, He Was THAT Nice.

“The greatest thing we can do is show people they are loved and capable of loving.”

  • Rogers was a Protestant minister, composer &A student of behavior.
  • When the TV was introduced, he saw the need to make it a tool to help children.
  • Rogers responded to every fan letter – over 1 million of them.

He Worked Tirelessly.

“If we in public TV can only make it clear that feelings are mentionable & manageable, we will have done a great service for mental health.”

  • Up before 5AM, the vegetarian, who didn’t smoke or drink, would swim laps before work.
  • He wrote scripts, songs, created the characters & puppet voices – all of which were some facet of his personality.

He Was Really Very Funny.

“I would like to do a program for people who are just about to go to sleep… We’ve heard that this slow-paced voice of mine can put people to sleep. So why not use it in that way?”

  • Loved to get a laugh telling jokes or talking in puppet voices at home.
  • Monty Python fan.

The Cardigan Was Special

“I guess that’s the best thing about things. They remind you of people.”

  • Many of the two dozen he wore were knitted by his mother.
  • He wore one every day as part of the comforting ritual that opened the show.
  • One is on display at the Smithsonian.

Watch him tell you.

The documentary "Won't You Be My Neighbor?" isn't the only upcoming movie about Fred Rogers. Click to learn which Oscar winner will play Mr. Rogers on the big screen.

by Jenna Lee,