"15, 20 years from now what will I remember ? What memory will I have ? There was one thing, and I'll never forget this, when Hanks was playing the scene with Michael Duncan... "You tell me". Probably the heart of the movie is in that scene. Michael was not our most experienced actor but in that scene as we were shooting I'm on Michael first and I'm realizing I'm getting distracted by Hanks who is off camera just giving him his lines. Hanks is deliverying an Academy Award winning performance off camera for Michel Duncan, to give that actor who has less experience than many people in the cast, to give him every possible thing he needs or can use to deliver the best possible performance. I've never seen anything quite so smart and generous as when I saw Tom doing that thing. I was so struck by his wisdom and his generosity in doing what he did and really being willing to maybe not have enough left-over for himself when the camera was on him. He wanted Michael to do so well. He wanted him to look so good. I'll never forget that. That was amazing." - About The Green Mile -
"What I would love to work with him again ! What a pleasure he makes the process. And as I said, he is deeply generous with... you don't get a moment of star kind of attitude or behavior. He's so generous with the other actors, he's so there for them. I remember when Michael, there's one of the most emotional, in fact the key emotional scene of the movie comes later in the film when Paul comes to John Coffey and says, you know it's closing in on the execution day, he says "what do you want me to do ?" and Coffey talks about the pain of the world, what he feels in his head every day like pieces of glass, you know. I remember when we were shooting that, I'm watching, the camera is on Michael first to get is coverage first, and he's fantastic. But my attention keeps going to Tom; 'cause Tom is also fantastic. He is off-camera, not feeding lines, he's delivering an Academy-Award performance for Michael Duncan because he knew, here's how smart and how generous Tom is, he knew that the whole movie was about this scene, and the whole scene was about this other character. It wasn't about Paul, it was about John Coffey. He's giving him [Michael Duncan] all the fuel he needs as an actor to shine, to be fantastic. Even if the risk of maybe burning himself out because once we turn around on Tom, is there gonna be gas left in the tank ? Tom didn't seem to care. He wanted Michael just to blaze. I will never forget... however long I live, that's really the one memory that I will most keenly remember from the film and the one thing about Hanks that sorts of says it all. He's ready to lay it down for the team 100% and he has all my respect and affection for that. He's hell of a guy !"
"We talked about our shared passion for the story, what we were looking for in every aspect of the show. That was actually incredibly helpful and incredibly generous of him, I think. I found him generous with his time, and passionate about what he was doing." - About The Pacific -
"When Tom Hanks walks in the room, it's Tom Hanks! But he immediately puts everybody at ease. Every compliment he gets, you can tell it really means a lot to him to receive it. He's humble, and first and foremost, he's spreading [the compliments] around."
"I think Tom is absolutely fantastic in this film. He's right there in some of the best films he's done and it's Tom Hanks doing what he does best. He gives an incredibly powerful, brilliant, performance about an ordinary man facing the most intense peril. A huge appeal for me with this project was working with Tom and we just hit it off. He's just such a brilliant actor and collaborator.
It's convention at the end, whenever your leading actor finishes his part, someone on set will say, "Part complete for Mr. or Mrs. 'Whoever'," and the crew will give a round of applause. But he got such a sustained, intense round of applause because, I think, everyone who worked on this film knew they had witnessed such a very, very special performance over the 12 weeks we made the film. So you could tell in that moment the esteemed privilege everyone had watching him from the first moment until the last." - About Captain Phillips -
“I just love him as an actor. He’s given me so many of my treasured moments in the cinema. When you think of Saving Private Ryan, Apollo 13, Cast Away, Philadelphia, and all the rest of them—he’s a magnificent human actor. He can also embody the Everyman like no one else. You don’t feel he has superpowers; he’s just like anyone would be, going, ‘How [can I] cope with this?’ When those four young [pirates] get on the ship, you feel from that look of Tom’s that all the certainties he’s ever had, all the realities of his working life, have been literally overwhelmed. It’s a feeling of shock and inadequacy and horror. And then it’s about the ways he responds to a situation of intense danger, [how he] slowly but surely regains some control and finds his humanity in that lifeboat amongst the other people.” - About Captain Phillips -
"The point about performance is of course it’s make-believe, but there’s some element of it that’s profoundly real, otherwise you couldn’t do it. You have to genuinely sort of go there in your mind. And Tom had spent such a long time being threatened and menaced by guns…. We did it in just a couple of takes; it felt intensely real. Tom has that ability to be so entirely in the moment. I said to him, I think after the first take, ‘Something’s happening,’ and he said, ‘It’s so funny, as soon as somebody’s being nice to me, all my defenses go down and I feel like I can’t keep myself together anymore.’
I remember watching that scene right outside the door, because it was a tiny room, and the captain of the ship and I think the number 2 were both there, very nice gentlemen. I looked up at the end of the take and I could see that the captain had a tear; it had moved him greatly. He said, ‘That’s what shock looks like.’ When a great actor moves you and makes you feel like you’ve seen something you wouldn’t see in your everyday life, it’s a privilege. I know everybody’s got to say nice things about their actors, but I really do think it’s a special, special performance.” - About Captain Phillips -
"Tom is a director’s dream because he will always try anything you suggest."
"He's my favorite actor ! I'll do everything with this guy."
"Even living or dead, I can't think of anyone who could do as good as Tom did. I can't think of anyone. Possibly Henry Fonda would have done something interesting with it, but who knows ? I don't think it would have been has good as Tom nor would have been as perfect as Tom." - About his performance in Forrest Gump -
"Hanks is an exciting actor to watch thinking."
"The quality is there is no one who makes a connection with his audience better than Tom. There's an honesty which is so sort of tangible, there's such a quality of... you know when I see Tom in movies I don't direct, that's important because I'm just an audience watching my friend who so quickly becomes that character I forget that I know him. And I have seen so many of Tom's films where in 5 seconds I forget that I know this man and we live four blocks away from each other in real life. And I think that is just a tremendous gift; Spencer Tracy had it. Henry Fonda had it. Jimmy Stewart had it. You know, very few actors have that gift where the communication between the actor and the audience is only as far away as the sound of their voices and Tom has that gift."