Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, the classic kids series developed by Fred MCFeely Rogers, is getting a new lease of life , announced PBS recently.
The new series will be called Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and will feature the original characters from Mr Rogers’ as adults with their own kids living in the make believe neighborhood. It will be in animation featuring Daniel Striped Tiger, four-year-old son of the original character from the old show.
The classic which aired from 1968 till 2001 has actually reared children with its gentle style of leading them through their childhood fears, fantasies and inexhaustible questions.
“You could watch ‘Mister Rogers’ if you were 4 and you could watch ‘Mister Rogers’ if you were 12 and you could get different things out of the program. That was one of its great strengths, and obviously in the context of that time when there weren't many children’s programs, that was an important strength,” Kevin Morrison, the Chief Operating Officer of the Fred Rogers Company who is also executive producing the new series explained in a recent interview to The Inquisitr.
“There are no longer three TV channels a child can watch after school; there are 300… It’s now structured so that there are programs that specifically target boys who are 9 and boys who are 12 and so on.”
“We weren't going to find someone like Fred Rogers and stick a sweater on him, but the company wanted very much to remain in public television as a producer for children,” Kevin Morrison added.
The news series is specifically targeted to pre-schoolers. The Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood will launch on PBS in fall 2012.
The man associated with developing the series is an American icon-Fred Rogers is the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2002, for his contributions to children's education.
Rogers developed the series specifically for children as he found television sorely lacking in programming for kids. In an interview with CNN in his later years, Rogers stated, "I went into television because I hated it so, and I thought there was some way of using this fabulous instrument to be of nurture to those who would watch and listen."
Beginning in 1963, Rogers developed the Mister Rogers program for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. In 1966, he moved back to Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, where he produced Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. The show ran for 895 episodes.
The show had Mr Rogers playing himself, in his iconic sweaters and sneakers and leading the children through the story of the day which could be a visit to a crayon factory or a music store.
He sometimes showed short films on the topic of the day which could be about childhood fears, bullying, sharing etc..And then he took viewers around the make believe Neighborhood of citizens, including King Friday XIII, Lady Elaine, Larry Horse Cornflake S. Pecially, X Owl, Tadpole Frogg and Donkey Holdie.
Fred Rogers died in 2003 of stomach cancer.