That time the 'Wicked Witch of the West' stopped by to see Mister Rogers (1975)

To show kids that she was just a nice person playing a wicked witch, Wizard of Oz actress Margaret Hamilton dropped by Mister Rogers' neighborhood in 1975. Hamilton, a former kindergarten teacher, talked with Rogers about how she dreamed of being a witch when she was a girl and was "thrilled" when the part was offered to her as an adult.

"Sometimes, Mister Rogers, I'm a little unhappy because lots of children are quite scared by her and that always makes me feel a little sad."

(Rusty's Electric Dreams) Read the rest

MOVIES: A first look at Tom Hanks as 'Mister Rogers'

What a well-timed tweet this one was, from Sony Pictures today during the worst day on Capitol Hill ever. Read the rest

Baseball team to wear jerseys that look like Mister Rogers' sweater

The South Bend Cubs, a minor league baseball team in South Bend, Indiana, will be wearing special jerseys that look like Mister Rogers' iconic red cardigan for a special event in August.

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, the South Bend Cubs will host Mister Rogers Day at Four Winds Field on Sunday, August 12 at their scheduled 2 p.m. game at Four Winds Field in South Bend, Indiana.

In recognition of this 50th anniversary, the South Bend Cubs are partnering with local PBS affiliate WNIT and Fred Rogers Productions to celebrate this milestone. Clips from Mister Rogers' Neighborhood will be shown on the video board throughout the game. Daniel Tiger, star of the award-winning PBS KIDS series Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood and the son of the beloved original puppet, will also be in attendance. Fans can sign a giant banner with their own message of thanks to Mister Rogers. Special messages of thanks from fans, players, and community members will also be shown throughout the game.

According to the team, replicas of the shirt will not be sold to the public but "game worn ones will be available in an online auction with proceeds to benefit local PBS station WNIT."

Lead image via Darren Rovell , second image via MILB.com

Thanks, Andy! Read the rest

Mister Rogers' Drunk History

It's been 50 years since Mister Rogers' Neighborhood premiered on television. Now you can learn the story of Fred McFeely Rogers (played in this episode by Colin Hanks) from comedian Solomon Georgio as he relays it to host Derek Waters -- completely sauced-- in the latest episode of Drunk History.

And, if you've never seen the real footage from 1969 of Mr. Rogers pleading to the Senate for more funding for his then one-year-old television, I recommend that you do:

Gives me goosebumps every time.

Also: There's going to be a Mister Rogers documentary in 2018 Read the rest

There's going to be a Mister Rogers documentary in 2018

There's going to be a feature documentary about Mister Rogers next year. It's aptly titled Won’t You Be My Neighbor? and will showcase "the lessons, ethics and legacy of iconic children's television host, Fred Rogers."

Fred Rogers led a singular life. He was a puppeteer. A minister. A musician. An educator. A father, a husband, and a neighbor. Fred Rogers spent 50 years on children’s television beseeching us to love and to allow ourselves to be loved. With television as his pulpit, he helped transform the very concept of childhood. He used puppets and play to explore the most complicated issues of the day—race, disability, equality and tragedy. He spoke directly to children and they responded by forging a lifelong bond with him—by the millions. And yet today his impact is unclear. WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? explores the question of whether or not we have lived up to Fred's ideal. Are we all good neighbors?

The film will be directed by Morgan Neville, who won an Academy Award for 20 Feet From Stardom.

Mister Rogers Documentary ‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor?’ Acquired by Focus Features

image via PBS Read the rest

Two long-lost Mister Rogers episodes appeared for a hot second

Over the weekend, two episodes of Mister Roger's Neighborhood "Conflict" series unexpectedly appeared on YouTube after being unavailable for three decades. YouTube quickly removed them, but to many, the timing felt related to Trump's plans to defund PBS. Read the rest

Mister Rogers was the original creepy clown gangsta

"I want to show you something," intones Mister Rogers, showing these pikers how he's been terrifying children with his creepy clown prank since 1968. Read the rest

Mr. McFeely's purple panda terrifies children

I think one of them freaked and set the rest of them off, like a field of shrieking land mines. The howling combined with poor old Mr. McFeely trying to console the kids is haunting. Speedy Delivery!

I would also like to take this opportunity to make you aware that there are a ton of Mister Rogers episodes up on the PBS Kids website. Have fun, kids.

[Video Link] Read the rest