Actor Tom Hanks says he would turn down an invitation from the White House to screen his new movie The Post.
Hanks portrays editor Ben Bradlee in the Steven Spielberg directorial. The film is about the Washington Post defying threats from then-President Richard Nixon to publish the Pentagon Papers stories in 1971.
Hanks, 61, said he would turn down an invitation to the White House because of Donald Trump’s attacks on the free press and parallels between the world now and what is documented in the film, reports hollywoodreporter.com.
“I don’t think I would. Because I think that at some point — look, I didn’t think things were going to be this way last November. I would not have been able to imagine that we would be living in a country where neo-Nazis are doing torchlight parades in Charlottesville and jokes about Pocahontas are being made in front of the Navajo code talkers,” said Hanks.
“And individually we have to decide when we take to the ramparts. You don’t take to the ramparts necessarily right away, but you do have to start weighing things. You may think: ‘You know what? I think now is the time.’
“This is the moment where, in some ways, our personal choices are going to have to reflect our opinions. We have to start voting, actually, before the election. So, I would probably vote not to go,” he added.
The actor said that one of the reasons why he was attracted to the project was the similarities between then and now.
“I said: ‘Well, look, this is ridiculously timely, and the even better part of it is: this is the story of the week that (Washington Post publisher) Katharine Graham became Katharine Graham. It had a very human element to it. I felt immediately that this was not just going to be a museum piece, but it was going to get into very, very human details of essentially these two people — Graham and Ben Bradlee,” said Hanks.
“He had a love for the woman, because he had this great empathy for what she had been through. He had great respect for the class that she demonstrated through her entire life. But he also had a very strict determination of what a newspaper’s job was. Ben knew the role of the Fourth Estate in society,” he added.
“So, all that stuff put together, I thought, was a pretty prescient story. It had an awful lot of parallels to 2017.”