'News of the World' star Tom Hanks relives glory days as a young actor in Chicago

ByMarsha Jordan WLS logo
Friday, January 15, 2021
Tom Hanks relives glory days as a young actor in Chicago
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Tom Hanks relives his glory days as a young actor in Chicago while speaking with ABC7's Janet Davies.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- "News of the World" stars Tom Hanks as Captain Kidd, a Civil War veteran. Now, he's sort of a traveling anchorman, going town to town to keep people informed. But the Captain gets back into battle protecting an orphan in trouble.

"So Tom, I wanna know, as an actor, do you like having a role where you have to be astride a horse?" ABC7's Janet Davies asked.

"Understand this, Janet, a horse can kill you, if the horse decides he wants, or she wants, to kill you," Hanks said. "So you have to start the day in a grand alliance with a creature that's nine times bigger than you, and that's a good way to start the day, that's a humbling way to start the day."

"Do you like being in a Western? I love westerns!" Davies asked.

"I like Westerns that seek to capture the way things were," Hanks explained. "At some point, Westerns became like a morality play, gunfire seemed to solve all the problems. You can't much better than John Ford's handling of the Western back in the grand days, but even they became some brand of morality play about rugged individualism."

Hanks shot "Road To Perdition" and "Nothing In Common" here in Chicago. He recalled the thrill of co-starring with Jackie Gleason here as a young actor.

"You have been in Chicago many times. What's the first thing you think about when you hear the word Chicago?" Davies asked.

"To be in this fantastic, massive, international big time city for the first time and be staying right there at the lakefront at the Drake Hotel. I had per diem and everything! I was absolutely covered," Hanks said. "I hit the streets - that's what I did when I first got to Chicago."

"News of the World" will be available to stream on-demand starting Friday. The role that will likely earn him another Oscar nomination.