FROM Morgan Neville
Director Morgan Neville on 'Won't You Be My Neighbor?' Fifty years ago, ‘Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood’ debuted nationally on public television. Even if you didn’t grow up with the show, you probably know that every episode began with the same ritual. Mister Rogers would come in through his front door, take off his jacket and put on a colorful cardigan. Then he’d remove his dress shoes in favor of blue sneakers. All the while, he’d sing the show’s theme song, which ends with a question: "Please won't you be my neighbor?" ‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor’ is also the title of a new documentary that explores the legacy of Fred Rogers, the consummate host of a show that was made for children, but had plenty to teach people of all ages. The film features interviews with Rogers’ widow and children, as well as the show’s cast and crew--many of who have never spoken publicly about Rogers before. ‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor’ is directed by Morgan Neville, our guest on the show this week. 'Won't You Be My Neighbor' director Morgan Neville Neville’s been producing and directing documentaries for the better part of 20 years. He won an Oscar for ‘20 feet From Stardom,’ his 2013 film about backup singers. Even with all that experience, the reaction to his newest project caught him off guard. He tells us why he thinks people get so emotional over Mister Rogers, how he got Rogers’ family and estate on board with the project, and explains how he managed to get fully funded before shooting a frame. ‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor?’ trailer
The impact of Mister Rogers on kids and adults For decades, Mister Rogers greeted millions of kids with a gentle tune as he changed into his cardigan and sneakers. With song, hand puppets, a trolley, and a good dose of make-believe, he taught kids to be good neighbors. He helped soothe their anxieties about adult things, like the Vietnam War and 9/11. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the debut of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.” A new documentary explores the impact Mister Rogers had on generations of children and adults. Fred Rogers meets with a disabled boy. Credit: Jim Judkis. Fred Rogers (left) with Francois Scarborough Clemmons (right) from his show “Mr. Rogers Neighborhood.” Credit: John Beale Fred Rogers with Daniel Tiger from his show “Mr. Rogers Neighborhood.” Credit: The Fred Rogers Company.
'Best of Enemies' and the Rise of Punditry Political coverage on broadcast and network TV wouldn’t be what it is without liberals and conservatives pitted against each other — with the competition often getting in the way of the substance. We hear how it all began. The year 1968 was critical in American politics. Lyndon Johnson had declined to run for re-election, and Richard Nixon was striving to make a comeback. As the party conventions opened, NBC and CBS were dominating ABC in broadcast ratings. So ABC came up with a gimmick. Two intellectuals with utterly different political views were brought together during convention coverage. Best of Enemies is the title of a new documentary about Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley. The producer and director is Academy Award winner Morgan Neville.
Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley, Jr. Spar in 'Best of Enemies' By the mid-1960s, the presidential conventions had turned into full-fledged TV events, but ABC was dead last in the ratings. In order to spice up their convention coverage, ABC executives invited two towering intellectuals to a series of debates. The fireworks between liberal Gore Vidal and conservative William F. Buckley, Jr. created giant ratings for ABC, and ushered in the age of bellicose cable news commentary.
Why is Trump so behind on filling staff jobs, establishing concrete policies? Yesterday Donald Trump signed a “decision memo” to revamp the air traffic control system. But there was little legislative detail in the plan. There’s not much to other splashy announcements from the White House, including tax cuts and the arms deal with Saudi Arabia. And hundreds of positions are unfilled in federal agencies.
In 'Speechless,' Scott Silveri combines comedy, family & disability Scott Silveri has written and produced sitcoms for more than 20 years. In all that time, he never encountered a TV family that looked anything like the one he grew up in -- with a mom, a dad...and a brother with cerebral palsy. He changed that with his show Speechless on ABC. Silveri tells us about looking to his own past for stories, and why he was determined to make a family comedy and not just a "disability show."
Terrorism in London: Lessons for the US This weekend’s terrorist attack in London left seven people dead and almost 50 injured. London police fatally shot the attackers, and ISIS claimed responsibility.