Indoor, Outdoor & Kids' Trampolines

Tom Hanks Turned Down Mister Rogers Role 3 Times: Here’s How He Was Finally Convinced

– All right, so you brought your son to set with you while shooting, right? – I always do. My son’s almost five and both
of us, me and my husband, are both directors, so he’s
kind of grown up going to sets, and he gave little tips
sometimes to Tom, like– – Oh my, Tom Hanks (laughs)?
– Yeah Sometimes he was like, “You know, I like what you’re doing, “I think you need a rocket ship”. (all laughing) – Tom was like “Okay, great,
great, what else, what else? “Tell me what else”. – [Kelly] Oh my God! – Yeah. – Two directors, that’s amazing. – Yeah. – That has got to be a
fun relationship ma’am. – It is, it means we
understand each others work. – [Kelly] That is cool. – We know what the other
one’s going through. – Really cool. – Story time must be great
for Wiley, like at night – Yeah, I know. – Story like “What did
mum say last night?” “Right, well, in my version”. – All the time. Everything’s a competition. – Yeah, yeah. – That is our household as well (laughs). So how did this movie make you reflect on your own life? – Well I mean like you, I grew up watching Mr. Rogers, but I think the thing about Mr. Rogers, is it’s also, we watched
it when we were so little. It’s almost like in our DNA. It’s like pre-memory. So I feel like I got to
rediscover Mr. Rogers as a grownup and as a parent, you know? – As a parent? – It’s a different thing to look at the show now and to see it through the eyes of a grown person, and to recognize, oh wow, he’s talking about things a lot of us still need to work on. – I mean literally, my husband and I sat and sobbed in our
bedroom watching this film. – I’m glad. – Because he is very close to my heart because I didn’t grow up with a father, so for a lot of us it’s a father figure, you know? – I’ve had so many people say that to me, that they almost actually believed Mr. Rogers was their dad when they were growing up.
– Yes. Or it was somebody that you wanted, you thought that’s what it should be like. You know? You did a really great job. – Like Bill and Joanne, Joanne Rogers, his wife and Bill who was his right
hand man for his whole life, said something to me the other day in Pittsburgh, where they said, “You know, Fred didn’t expect “everybody to live in his image. “He accepted us with
all our imperfections. “He knew we weren’t perfect parents. “He knew we weren’t perfect people.” Like, something is
freeing about recognizing both that Fred was a human being, he wasn’t a saint, and that he didn’t expect
us to be saints either. He didn’t shy away from the hard parts of being alive and being a human being. – And that was actually
one of my favorite parts in the film is where his wife does say, “He has to work at this. “This isn’t like,– – She said that to me. – I know. – That’s in the movie
because she said that to me. – And that makes hope for all of us, because I’m like, if you just come out being awesome and lovely, well great, that’s easy for you. But knowing he had to work at it, we all have to work at it. It takes effort. – It’s like to take time to listen to other people
and empathize with them, takes more work. – One funny thing I found
about this though, is that I heard Tom Hanks turned
this role down a few times– – He did. – but then somehow you roped him in. How did you rope him in and can I know your secret? (audience laughing) – I’ll never do anything so miraculous again in my life. The story is that, I’m friends
with Tom Hanks’ son Colin. – Oh, okay. – And Tom and I met at a backyard birthday party where all the kids where
playing in the backyard. And we were talking and he said, “Oh, what do you do?” and I said, “Well, I’m a director”. And he said “Oh, there
was just this article “in the New York Times this weekend “about women directors in Hollywood.” And I said, “Yeah, I’m in that article”. – How cool did you feel? With Tom Hanks standing there how cool did you feel, like “Actually, I’m in the article. “No big deal, Tom.” – No big deal, Tom Hanks. And he said, “I’ll watch your movie” and a week later he personally emailed me and said, “I watched your movie. “Let’s get together and chat.” And that the other thing about him, is that he doesn’t have like someone reach out to you, like he
reaches out to you and says. – That’s so cool. So he must have loved your work. – And then we kept in touch for years and when I signed on to this movie, the Producer said, “Tom Hanks has always been
our dream as Mr. Rogers “but he’s passed on the movie three times. “He said no.” And I said, “Well I could try”. And I reached out to him
and he (finger clicks) signed on right away. – [Kelly] You’re magical. You’re magical! (audience clapping) – [Interviewee] And I’m just so grateful! – [Kelly] He is perfect. – [Interviewee] He is. – The casting was perfect. The directing was amazing. – Everybody who worked on this movie worked on it because they loved it. And you could feel it.
– It reads through the camera. Yeah, you can feel it and it matters. – It does matter. You know I really believe
you don’t have to suffer to make good art. – Yes. Oh I love you.

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