For decades, gays and lesbians were almost invisible in film and television. Homosexuality in the larger culture was draped in code words, and onscreen depictions either disguised gays and lesbians or treated them as objects of ridicule or scorn. Then things started to change.
Hanks had come under attack from the Church of Latter Day Saints after he criticised Mormons who backed Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment to the state's law. Speaking last week at the premiere in Los Angeles of Big Love, a television series which he produces about a polygamist Mormon sect, Hanks had said that the proposal amounted to "codified discrimination". He added: "There are a lot of people who feel that is un-American and I one of them.
He cried on both occasions when being awarded best actor Oscars, earning him the nickname Tom Hankies. But those handkerchiefs are now being used to wipe tears of laughter all the way to the bank. He has also quietly seen off many of his big rivals this year.
His religious beliefs are about as diverse as the characters he has played. Hanks has identified with everything from Mormonism to his most recent and enduring faith—Greek Orthodox. In his own words:. The major religion I was exposed to in the first 10 years of my life was Catholicism.
One of the most well-respected actors in Hollywood today is Tom Hanks. He is one of the most popular actors among American film, and television viewers. He has gained great success as a film actor, having starred in some of the greatest movies of his generation.
Right now, if you're a straight actor in Hollywood, it's great to be gay. Of course, you might argue this is nothing new. More recently, Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger gained Academy nods for playing two cowboys tormented by their attraction to each other in Brokeback Mountain.
Sometimes, Hollywood's secrets spill out in the most surprising ways. Back in October, two of the stars on Grey's Anatomy, the hottest hospital drama show on American television, had a raging fight on the set. Isaiah Washington was ready to go with a scene, but some of the other actors were not.
Tom Hanks has just proved that even he, long considered one of the nicest, most laid-back people in Hollywood, has a limited level of patience when it comes to the tabloid media. The actor has successfully scored a retraction from notorious tabloids over false stories they printed which claimed he and his wife Rita Wilson were about to divorce. In a rare move for the tabloids, which have a history of sensationalist front page stories which have been discredited time and time again, The National Enquirer and Star — who are both owned by American Media Inc — retracted and apologised for the stories. They will reportedly also publish corrections in their upcoming issues.
About four years. Jonathan Demme and I were looking for the right story, always with the goal — which annoyed some people at the time — to have mainstream success with a movie about a gay man with AIDS. We worked really hard to find that story that would really convince an audience.