Tom Hanks, as an actor, has earned the love of many over the decades. With some of the greatest movies ever made under his belt, his legendary Hollywood career has spanned several years. Although Tom Hanks wasn’t Tom Hanks from the get-go, the actor had to overcome all the trials and tribulations and learn the way of Hollywood to survive and become one of the greatest.
With time the actor realized, the power of saying ‘no’ to preserve his artistic desire as an actor. Although it felt wrong at the time, to misuse the privilege he was handed all of a sudden, the artist inside him got hampered. Thus, Hanks reinstate a rule that led him where he is today.
Tom Hanks wasn’t brave enough to say “no”
After the hit 1992 movie, A League of Their Own, everybody wanted to work with the star in the making, Tom Hanks. And the actor thought he won the lottery, in a world where actors struggled to find a strong footing in the industry to even make a simple living, he was being served opportunities on a golden platter. Thus, Hanks had a hard time letting all the opportunities go, and accepted every single one of them at the cost of his own artistic desires.
Thus, after a series of films that did not help to meet the fire inside his heart to do more, the actor started questioning his artistry. He started wondering what kind of opportunities would excite him. Hanks wasn’t enjoying his craft like he used to and instead, got involved in the business and the statistics part of it and was afraid to make people upset who were eager to work with him. In The Hollywood Reporter interview, the actor stated,
“After I did A League of Their Own [in 1992], I took a year off from making any artistic decisions. At that time, my career was an express train,–I was continually being asked to make movies, so I felt I had won an actor’s lottery. If people were asking, how could I say no? That would be insane. But I finally had to ask myself, ‘What kind of creative entity am I? And when do I start to control some of my artistic destiny?’”
Although his career grew at a rapid pace, speed was not something he was looking for. That made him realize he has lost control and needed to claim what’s his back. Therefore, decided to make some ground rules for himself to get back on track.
What did Tom Hanks do to take control back?
The legendary two-time Oscar-winning film actor, Tom Hanks back in the 90s felt like he was losing artistic control over his craft. He like a robot, said yes to any opportunity that came along just not to upset the people around him, and thus, to finally get back on track the actor decided to instigate some rules. In the same The Hollywood Reporter interview, Hanks stated,
“There was a point when I was older — I was in my mid-thirties — and I essentially said, ‘There’s a whole type of part I’m not gonna play anymore … p**sies. I felt as though I had done enough work to be established in the business, but there was still sort of like a physiological desire, a fire in the belly that I had, that was not being fed,”
Thus, after playing a few mind-numbing characters for some years the actor decided to cancel out a certain type of box he was put into and wanted to step out of it in search of something exciting that could meet his hunger. After this, he followed that rule religiously and gave out some incredibly memorable performances that are cherished generation after generation.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter