A schmaltzy feel-good movie starring Tom Hanks has been an unlikely critical and box office success. ‘A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood’ about American children’s TV presenter of yesteryear Fred Rogers has been described as “a really entertaining and touching film” with “a powerfully affecting message about acceptance and understanding.” It pits a hard-bitten reporter from a dysfunctional family against Rogers, who was a national treasure in the US, admired for the way he encouraged children and adults to talk and think about their feelings using puppets. All attempts to dig dirt on Rogers fails with his antagonist finally admitting “he’s just about the nicest person I’ve ever met.” Rogers’ show ran from 1968 to 2001.
Born 20 March 1928 8.20am Latrobe, Pennsylvania, with a businessman father and a charitably-oriented mother, Fred Rogers was a shy, introverted, overweight and bullied child who isolated himself and played with puppets. He emerged to take a degree in musical composition and was ordained as a minister. He went into television since he thought he could use the medium to help nurture young children. His show emphasized young children’s social and emotional needs, unlike Sesame Street, which focused on cognitive learning and it continued unchanged for over thirty years.
He had his Sun in final degree Pisces conjunct Uranus in Aries with Moon, Venus, Mercury also in Pisces and all in the 11th house of friends and the wider society. He was clearly innovative with Uranus there, but in a softly Piscean way – and musical. His Jupiter in the 12th would give him an inner peace that others would envy. He also had a fated Yod of an ambitious and uncompromising Mars in Aquarius in the 10th sextile a reserved 8th house Saturn inconjunct Pluto in the communication 3rd. A focal point Pluto would give him an intensity and depth awareness of others but also an ability to withdraw into himself. Handled well such a Pluto can help bring in a new order of things, though its downside is a tendency to manipulate. His Pluto was also in a pushily confident square to Jupiter and trine his Moon. His Saturn in the 8th squared his Moon and widely his Sun, making him emotionally reserved and a workaholic. Saturn in the 8th also points to a grandfather prominent in his childhood. His ‘niceness’ was backed by a powerful personality.
Tom Hanks, born 9 July 1956 5.17 pm Concord, California, would have some empathy for Rogers since he was also a shy and unpopular child at school with religious leanings. He is also Watery, with a Cancer Sun and Mercury, Mars in Pisces and Saturn in Scorpio – and Hanks also has Jupiter in his 12th. Not precisely the same but reasonably similar.