Emmy Winner James Emswiller Dies After Incident On Set Of Mister Rogers Movie

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Emmy Winner James Emswiller Dies After Incident On Set Of Mister Rogers Movie


Correction: The map of Lebanon County was previously used instead of one of Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania.

Tragedy has struck the film set of the upcoming Mister Rogers movie after one employee suffered a heart attack and then fell off the second story building.

James Emswiller via LinkedIn

According to USA Today, authorities confirmed James Emswiller, 61, passed away on Thursday night following the incident in Mount Lebanon, Pennsylvania, just about 20 miles southwest of Pittsburgh.

Map of Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania.
Map of Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania. Google Maps

Emswiller - who in 2015 had won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Limited Series for HBO's Bessie - is reported to have taken a smoke break in between scenes of the highly anticipated film.  

His coworkers had heard a noise and discovered his fragile state after he fell over the brick wall on the balcony of an apartment building.

The apartment building
James Emswiller fell off an apartment building in in Mount Lebanon, Pennsylvania.Gabriella DeLuca/Twitter

An on-set nurse attempted to assist Emswiller, but by the time paramedics arrived, he was in full cardiac arrest, reports TMZ.

He was then taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital in critical condition, but was pronounced dead three hours later.  

It's said that the film's star, Tom Hanks, was on set, but left shortly after. Filming was canceled that evening while law enforcement investigated.

Tom Hanks stars as Mister Rogers in the untitled film.
Tom Hanks stars as Mister Rogers in the untitled film.Sony Pictures/Twitter

The upcoming movie, which is tentatively titled You Are My Friend, is inspired by the Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod, who is set to be depicted as a cynical journalist who is tasked with writing a profile on the popular children show's host. Throughout the film, Junod's perspective on life will change following his frequent interactions with Rogers.

The Associate Press reports the film is set to be released on October 19.

2018 marks the 50th anniversary of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, which has also inspired both a postage stamp and a documentary focusing on the life of Rogers, titled Won't You Be My Neighbor, which was released on June 8.

Mr. Rogers on his TV Show
'Mr. Rogers Neighborhood' filmed from 1968 to 2001 and had more than 900 episodes.PBS/YouTube

[H/T: TMZ, USA Today]

Our thoughts and prayers go out to James Emswiller's family and friends during this difficult time.

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