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Tom Hanks to play Mr. Rogers in movie based on his life

Tom Hanks to play Mr. Rogers in movie based on his life

The movie, called "You Are My Friend", will show how Junod, a cynical journalist, begrudgingly takes an assignment to write a profile on Rogers.

Marielle Heller (Diary of a Teenage Girl) will direct from a screenplay by Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster (Transparent, Beautiful Ruins).

The Oscar victor is officially set to portray cardigan-loving TV personality Fred Rogers in the forthcoming bio-pic You Are My Friend.

"I'm thrilled to be making 'You Are My Friend, '" Heller said. As a mother, I am so inspired by the teachings of Fred Rogers and as a human I am in awe of his life's work.

"The really cool thing about Tom Hanks playing Fred is that Fred and Tom Hanks are similar in a really essential way in that they are gentle people, they are soft spoken people, but they are powerful people", Junod said.

The script was picked from the 2013 Blacklist, a list culled by studio executives of the best unproduced stories of the year. "Mari Heller is the ideal visionary filmmaker to bring Noah and Micah's script to life and because of her vision and this remarkable script, we have the quintessential actor to play Fred Rogers", added Turtletaub and Saraf in a joint statement. For those unfamiliar, the documentary chronicles Rogers' rise to fame as the host of an educational show for children in which he invited the characters in his neighborhood to come over, chat, learn and teach. Fitzerman-Blue and Harpster will exec produce alongside Big Beach's Leah Holzer. More than ever, Mister Rogers' unwavering message of love and hope is needed now.

TriStar just acquired worldwide rights to the project, which will start production in the fall.

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