Chapter 10 - Historic Projects

2007 - 2011


Tom Hanks then starred in the critically-acclaimed political satire, Charlie Wilson's War (2007), adapted by Aaron Sorkin from George Crile's non-fiction novel. Tom Hanks played a U.S. congressman, Charlie Wilson, with a taste for women and alcohol whose deep patriotism and frustration with American foreign policy led him to team up with the wealthiest woman in Texas (Julia Roberts) and a blue-collar CIA operative (Philip Seymour Hoffman) to fund the Mujahideen fighters after the Soviets invade Afghanistan during the Cold War. Once again, Tom Hanks found himself being showered with praise for another strong performance.

Tom Hanks also worked with his son, Colin, in The Great Buck Howard (2008), in which he played his on-screen father in a few scenes.

John Adams (2008) is the third miniseries produced by Tom Hanks for HBO. After meeting with David McCullough, historian and author of the book John Adams about the life of the second president of the United States, Tom Hanks is given the green-light to adapt the book into a miniseries. The authenticity of the miniseries is once again praised by the critics and it gathered several awards : an Emmy Award for Outstanding Miniseries, a TCA Award and a Golden Globe for Best-Miniseries.

In 2008, Tom Hanks took back the role of Robert Langdon in Angels & Demons, the second adaption of a Dan Brown's novel, released in May 2009. The movie was better received by the critics and the audience than its prequel, The Da Vinci Code.

On April 27, 2009, Tom Hanks was honored by The Film Society of Lincoln Center for his distinguished career, following the steps of Alfred Hitchcock, Elizabeth Taylor, Robert Altman, Martin Scorsese, Diane Keaton and Meryl Streep.

After the success of Band of Brothers, Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg had received tons of letters asking them to tell the story of the soldiers who fought in the Pacific during World War II. In 2010, The Pacific, a 10-part miniseries which took eight years to make, aired on HBO. The miniseries followed three Marines (John Basilone, Eugene Sledge and Robert Leckie) as they fought on the Pacific front during World War II. With a budget of $250 million dollars, The Pacific was obviously the most expensive miniseries ever created. It received eight Emmys and a TCA Award.

Tom Hanks reprised his role of Woody for Toy Story 3 (2010). The movie was a huge success since it became Pixar's highest grossing film and the first animated movie ever to gross more than a billion dollar worldwide.

In January 2011, the Producers Guild Awards honored Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman with the Norman Lear Television Award for "changing the television landscape with extremely unique, award-winning programming", such as Band of Brothers, John Adams, The Pacific or Big Love, all produced by the production company they formed in 1998, Playtone.

After having given up directing in 2001, Tom Hanks is back behind the camera with Larry Crowne, a movie he wrote, directed, starred in and produced. The movie tells the story of a man forced to reinvent himself and who goes back to college to find a new career as he navigates the second act of his life. Tom Hanks plays the main character opposite Julia Roberts with whom he had worked on Charlie Wilson's War. The low-budget movie will be released on July 1, 2011 in the United States. 

Tom Hanks became a grandfather when his son Colin and daughter-in-law Samantha Bryant welcomed granddaughter Olivia Jane Hanks on February 1, 2011.

His next projects include a movie with Sandra Bullock, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Kathryn Bigelow's next movie, Triple Frontier and Cloud Atlas also starring Halle Berry and Natalie Portman.