Tom is one of the talented actors that was featured in the Hollywood Reporter Actors Roundtable … here is an excerpt from the interview with Tom, Robert DeNiro, Adam Sadler, Jamie Foxx, and Adam Driver.
Robert De Niro, Adam Driver, Jamie Foxx and Adam Sandler also share dark moments, trade secrets and the roles that redefined their lives.
There’s an old adage among actors: An elderly actor, Edmund Gwenn, was getting toward the end of his life, living in a retirement home, when he was visited by a friend who commiserated about how difficult things must be. No, shrugged Gwenn, “Dying is easy. Comedy is hard.” That story was the starting point for a powerful, emotional and funny conversation involving some of the leading practitioners of both comedy and drama at this year’s Actor Roundtable. Robert De Niro, 76 (playing an aging — and de-aged — gangster in The Irishman) was joined by Adam Driver, 36 (as a man struggling with divorce in Marriage Story and a congressional operative trying to uncover the truth in The Report), Jamie Foxx, 51 (as a man wrongfully imprisoned in Just Mercy), Tom Hanks, 63 (as the real-life Mr. Rogers in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood), Shia LaBeouf, 33 (as his own father in the autobiographical Honey Boy), and Adam Sandler, 53 (as a jewelry dealer struggling to survive in Uncut Gems).
So, dying is easy, comedy is hard. True or false?
ROBERT DE NIRO Well, there’s all kinds of comedy. Certain comedies are easy for certain people, certain comedy for me is not. I can’t do what Billy Crystal does, Eddie Murphy, Adam [Sandler]. But I can do other things. I like to think that I work in situations: In Marty Scorsese’s movies, some situations are funny and ironic in and of themselves, which is like life. Working with him, whatever you want to do, you can try and do it and maybe it’ll work. With some directors, you don’t even go there.
ADAM SANDLER If you have something you’re confident in, something you believe in, it’s the same. If you believe in a joke, if you believe in a dramatic scene, you go in there with the same approach.
JAMIE FOXX Here’s the thing: Comedy is a natural thing. I was watching [Sandler] when I was 18 years old, sneaking into The Comedy Store, watching him go up when it was like titans — it was Chris Rock, it was Eddie [Murphy] working out shit. I remember Eddie had on this yellow, fuckin’ Century 21 jacket. (Laughter.) And somebody said, “Yo, what’s up with that jacket?” And then Eddie, he said, “Oh, whatever, I’ll crush you with my wallet?” And then everybody started laughing.
SANDLER Oh yeah, yeah.
FOXX It’s interesting, when I look at everybody here, there’s respect. But then I look at Adam and before he even said anything, I’m laughing. That’s the first ingredient, right?
SANDLER That’s correct.
FOXX And then the second ingredient is: As comedians, you get that liftoff, that launch, where everything you’re saying is funny, it’s hilarious, people are giving you that light. It only becomes difficult once you reach that top comedic level. Now people are expecting the world. I was at Eddie’s house, he’s talking about getting back into stand-up. And I don’t know if you understand this with comedians, but we can never look good. If I start looking too good, I’m not as funny.
SANDLER You need something, an imperfection is going to relax an audience.
FOXX I said, “Eddie, if you want to do stand-up, first thing you’ve got to do is: You’ve got to fix your house.” He’s like, “What you mean?” I said, “Your house is too perfect. (Laughter.) You’ve got the candles, scented, and all that shit.” I said, “Eddie, at my crib, I have shit at my house that doesn’t work on purpose, so I stay funny. I’ve got this little carpet in the kitchen that’s sort of ruffled up and I’ve got a bathroom where you turn on the faucet and it sprays out.” And my daughter’s like, “Why don’t you fix it?” I feel like if I fix all this shit, I won’t be funny.
TOM HANKS Can you be funny if you grew up with a built-in swimming pool in your backyard? I don’t think you can. If you grew up being able to swim any time you wanted to, you experienced none of the shortcomings of life that you turn into self-deprecation. You can’t do it.Continue Reading
Some new stills and images have been released from Tom’s film A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.
Here are some clips of Tom from his recent interview with Kelly Clarkson ….
Tom Hanks Says It Was ‘A Nightmare’ Recreating The ‘Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood’ Opening
om Hanks tells Kelly how difficult it was to recreate the opening to “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” for his new film, “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.” As it turns out, the sequence—which took about 27 times to get right—was “nearly impossible” for Tom to pull off.
Kelly Admits To Tom Hanks: ‘We Call Balls “Wilson” In Our House’
Kelly asks Tom Hanks what it’s like to be recognized in public, and he admits that some fan encounters are a little more embarrassing than others. Plus, Kelly admits that she calls every ball in her house “Wilson” in honor of Tom’s iconic “Cast Away” role.
Tom Hanks Is Perplexed Why No One Understands His Wrap Gift: ‘Are These People Professional Actors?’
Matthew Rhys and Susan Kelechi Watson tell Kelly about the thoughtful wrap gift their “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” co-star Tom Hanks gave them—but neither of them know what it is. Kelly gets to the bottom of this mystery and asks the gift-giver himself to explain this confounding (but graciously received) object.
TODAY’s Savannah Guthrie sits down with the iconic actor Tom Hanks about his new role in the biopic about Fred Rogers.
– Tom Hanks Archives > 2019 > November 19 | The Today Show
— Twitter Movies (@TwitterMovies) November 27, 2019
Here is the full interview clip of Tom & Renee did for Actors on Actors.
In their Actors on Actors conversation, Tom Hanks and Renée Zellweger talk about playing real-life people, Mr. Rogers and Judy Garland, in their films this year, and they reflect on their first jobs in the film industry.
And here are some of the outtakes from their shoot.
– Tom Hanks Archives > Outtakes > 2019 > 007
Tom and the cast of A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood attended a photo call and screening of the film in New York City on Sunday.
– Tom Hanks Archives > 2019 > November 17 | A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood Photo Call In New York CIty
– Tom Hanks Archives > 2019 > November 17 | A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood Screening In New York City
A feature ran by the New York Times on Tom.
Hanks is playing Mister Rogers in a new movie and is just as nice as you think he is. Please read this article anyway.
Here is a list of stories about Tom Hanks I’ve heard over the last few miserable months, as it appeared that politeness and civility and manners were facing an extinction event in this country.
Once, in 2008, when he was shooting “Angels & Demons” in Rome by the Pantheon, a bride and her father couldn’t approach the chapel because of the hullabaloo, so Hanks stopped filming to escort them to the altar.
Once, in 2015, he stopped by a table of Girl Scout cookies and bought some boxes, donated an additional $20, then offered selfies to passers-by as an enticement to buy. That same year, he found a young woman’s student ID in a park and used his charming Twitter feed, which is filled with found items, to get it back to her.
Once, in 1997, before shooting “Saving Private Ryan,” Steven Spielberg sent Hanks and other cast members out to do military training in the woods with a former Marine. After spending time in the rain, they all voted to quit the training, except for Hanks, who chose to obediently perform the job he was hired for and spurred the other men to stick with it as well.
These are the regular-nice acts of a person who holds the mantle of Everyman in our movie star culture. But lately they have signified more than simple good deeds. They’re something like the embodiment of a gold standard of menschiness, which is not just gone from the culture at large, but now plays like a parody of it.
There’s more. Spielberg once said about him, “If Norman Rockwell were alive today, he would paint a portrait of Tom.”Continue Reading
Nothing better! Two of my favorite stars sitting down together to talk their newest roles! Tom joins actress Renee Zellweger for their Actors on Actors interview for Variety.
Tom Hanks (“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”) and Renée Zellweger (“Judy”) sat down for a chat for “Variety Studio: Actors on Actors.” For more, click here.
During their enduring careers, Tom Hanks and Renée Zellweger have gone back and forth seamlessly between comedies and dramas, played romantic leads and won Academy Awards — she for best supporting actress in 2003’s “Cold Mountain,” he for best actor in 1993’s “Philadelphia” and 1994’s “Forrest Gump.” And in their latest films — Zellweger’s “Judy” and Hanks’ “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” — both actors masterfully transform into real people, with Zellweger channeling Judy Garland in her final days, and Hanks embodying Fred Rogers.
In conversation recently, the two actors find another point in common: celebrity encounters during their time in the service industry. Hanks was a hotel bellboy; Zellweger supported herself during college as a cocktail waitress in an Austin bar.
“I carried Cher’s bags!” Hanks says excitedly. “No, you did not!” Zellweger replies. “When she was married to Gregg Allman,” Hanks continues. “I brought in the bags, and I said, ‘I believe these are the bags you asked for, Mr. Allman.’ He said, ‘I don’t know — Toots?’ And then Toots was Cher, and she came in, and yeah, that was her bag.” For Zellweger, “the guys from Bad Company would come in, Nick Nolte came in, Gary Busey came in.” At the mention of Busey, Hanks says, “Oh, that — he was there for a while.” (Hanks later clarifies his joke, saying, “Gary would appreciate it, because he’s bone-dry sober right now.”)
After discussing their before-they-were-famous star sightings, they turn to how they built their characters for “Judy” and “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.”
Tom Hanks: So what is the first thing you do when playing Judy Garland? That’s like playing Elvis, or John Lennon, or something. What’s the first thing you do?
Renée Zellweger: Well, there’s a lot of material. You watch everything.
Hanks: Did you watch the variety show that she did?
Zellweger: Oh yes!
Hanks: That was a work of art, really. And the fact that nobody was tuning in because she was —
Zellweger: They were up against “Bonanza.”
Hanks: Oh, is that what killed it? Oh, my! Sometimes you get frustrated because you’ve found this nugget that explains the entire character, and you can’t find any place to put it in the movie. We had one thing that I found out: I asked Joanne Rogers, “What did Fred drink in the morning? Did he have coffee?” She said, “No, he drank hot cranberry juice.”
I went to Marielle Heller, who was the director of “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” and said, “Is there any way we can get it in?” And she said, “The most we’re going to be able to do is have a glass of red liquid sitting on the counter there while you’re talking on the phone.” I said, “Good enough for me.”
Zellweger: It’s different when you’re playing a person who’s lived. There’s a different responsibility.
Hanks: The legend of Fred has not gone through the bowdlerization that Judy’s has — everything she went through, and how she became who she was. Did you have an overabundance of information you had to sift through?
Zellweger: Well, you try to be judicious about what it is that you take as fact. So, there was a lot of contradictory information. And there are so many biographies out there by people who claim to have known her.
Hanks: In the film, when you’re in the cab and you’re trying to find a place to stay, Lorna, the daughter, says, “Are you going to sleep now, Mommy?” because you took a couple of pills, and Judy says, “No, these are the other kind, honey,” which means you’re going to go up. So there, you’ve laid down a foundation of somebody who was pretty strung out by that time, suffering from a lifetime of taking mood-altering drugs just to get along with the day. There are those stories of them putting Dexedrine in her and Mickey Rooney’s soup so they could get through those Andy Hardy movies, you know?Continue Reading
I think that Tom would have been hilarious in this role!
The actor says his role in “The One With the Male Nanny” almost went to a very Big star.
Freddie Prinze Jr. says he’s lucky to have landed the role of Sandy on Friends, especially since the character could have gone to a very Big star.
Audiences met Sandy in the 200th episode of the long-running sitcom titled “The One With the Male Nanny,” in which Prinze played the titular character with a somewhat unorthodox job. He comes into the lives of Rachel (Jennifer Aniston) and Ross (David Schwimmer) as the on-again/off-again couple search for a nanny for their baby daughter, Emma. Ross doesn’t approve of Sandy the “manny,” taking issue with the fact that a man is so sensitive. Ross ends up firing the caregiver, but only after Sandy manages to help him get more in touch with his own emotions.
Prinze only played the character in one episode, and says he wasn’t the first actor they had in mind for the role.
“I wasn’t even supposed to be [Sandy], that was originally offered to Tom Hanks but he wasn’t gonna make it back from his film on time,” Prinze tells EW. “And so my agent called me and said, ‘Do you want to be on Friends? And I said, ‘Yeah, I’ll do an episode of Friends. That’ll be great.’ He said, ‘Yeah, it shoots tomorrow.’ and I was like, ‘What?’ He said, ‘Yes, tomorrow so I’ll send you the script.’”Continue Reading