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Mister Rogers' widow to visit Jimmy Fallon to discuss new documentary

Shirley McMarlin
| Tuesday, June 12, 2018, 10:48 a.m.
Joanne Klimovich Harrop | Tribune-Review
Joanne Rogers, wife of the late Fred Rogers, will appear June 11 on 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,' to discuss the new Mister Rogers documentary, 'Won't You Be My Neighbor?' Here, she poses in front of the United States Postal Service's Mister Rogers Forever Stamp, unveiled March 23 at WQED's Fred Rogers Studio in Oakland where 'Mister Rogers' Neighborhood' was filmed until 2001.

At age 90, Joanne Rogers is stepping into the limelight to promote the new documentary about her late husband Fred Rogers.

Rogers will appear tonight on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" to talk about "Won't You Be My Neighbor?" The documentary about the children's television pioneer known to generations of children (and adults) as Mister Rogers is now playing in select theaters, 15 years after his death.

She also sat down with Megyn Kelly of NBC's "Today," for a segment originally scheduled to air today, but now reportedly switched to tomorrow to accommodate a lengthier conversation.

Rogers will share Fallon's guest couch with actor Jeremy Renner and celebrity dancer Derek Hough. Fallon's musical guests will be French indie musician Christine and the Queens, featuring Dam-Funk.

Maybe Christine will sing "It's Such a Good Feeling" to make Rogers feel at home.

Or Fallon could do one of his signature musical renditions of a Mister Rogers song, complete with cardigan and sneakers.

In 2012, he spoofed presidential candidate Mitt Romney's comments on wanting to cut funding to PBS, where "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" aired for many years.

Joanne Rogers should feel right at home on the national television stage. She was trained as a classical pianist and performed in a duo-piano team with college classmate Jeannine Morrison until 2008.

She also wrote the introduction for "Life's Journeys According to Mister Rogers: Things to Remember Along the Way," a collection of Fred Rogers' stories, observations and insights.

"Won't You Be My Neighbor?" has garnered positive reviews, earning 3.5 stars from movie review website rogerebert.com, and a 99-percent positive rating at Rotten Tomatoes.

The Tonight Show airs at 11:35 p.m. on NBC.

Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-836-5750, smcmarlin@tribweb.com or via Twitter @shirley_trib.

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