James Emswiller, Crew Member on Mister Rogers Movie, Dies After Falling Off Balcony Set Balcony

Mister Rogers Crew Member Dies On Set Fall
Tom Hanks as Mister Rogers. Lacey Terrell

James Emswiller, a 61-year-old crew member on the upcoming Mister Rogers movie, You Are My Friend, died on Thursday, October 11, while on set.

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The Mt. Lebanon Police revealed he was on the balcony alone smoking a cigarette when he fell two stories off. By the time EMTs arrived to the scene, Emswiller was in full cardiac arrest, according to TMZ. He was taken to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Mercy and pronounced dead three hours later.

Tom Hanks, who is portraying Mister Rogers in the film, was at the site at the time.

“This is a devastating tragedy and the studio is investigating the matter. Our thoughts and prayers are with Jim’s loved ones, friends, and colleagues,” Sony Pictures said in a statement to Us Weekly.

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The sound technician has been in the industry since 1989 and won an Emmy Award in 2015 for his work on HBO’s Bessie. He also did sound mixing on the upcoming Showtime series, Escape at Dannemora. His credits include Jack Reacher and The Avengers.

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Local Pennsylvania news outlets were the first to report the news.

The film is set to hit theaters in October 2019.

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