Matthew Rhys Didn’t Know Mr. Rogers Before Starring in ‘A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood’

Matthew Rhys sat down for an interview with host Seth Meyers on Late Night on Monday (November 18) and dished all about starring in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood is a timely story of kindness triumphing over cynicism, based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. After a jaded magazine writer (Matthew Rhys) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers (Tom Hanks), he overcomes his skepticism, learning about empathy, kindness, and decency from America’s most beloved neighbor.

“Ironically I’m very cynical and knew nothing about Mr. Rogers so it was perfect casting,” the 45-year-old actor told Seth. “My first reaction is I read the script and said to my [wife] Keri [Russell], ‘who is Mr. Rogers?’ I took a deep dive and I thought something was wrong because this gentleman is speaking very slowly and seemingly only had one camera that they would never cut away. I realized that it wasn’t for me, but for children of a certain age. Then I discovered the true genius of Mr. Rogers.”

Matthew also discussed being starstruck by Tom Hanks and trying to impress Keri Russell while filming The Americans – Watch the interview here!
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