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Tom Hanks: I’ve Only Made ‘Four Pretty Good’ Movies in Decades-Long Career

"Movie-making is very hard work over a very long period of time that consists of so many moments of joy slapped up against an equal number of feelings of self-loathing," the Oscar winner said.

CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 25: Tom Hanks attends the screening of "Elvis" during the 75th annual Cannes film festival at Palais des Festivals on May 25, 2022 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Tom Hanks

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After almost 30 years in Hollywood, Tom Hanks has four films he deems worthy of being “pretty good.”

The Academy Award winner who has starred in everything from “Forrest Gump” to “Elvis” announced his upcoming novel, “The Making of Another Major Motion Picture Masterpiece,” out May 9, 2023. The book is a fictional story about the making of a multi-million dollar superhero film and the comic book creation that inspired it.

“No one knows how a movie is made — though everyone thinks they do,” Hanks told People. “I’ve made a ton of movies (and four of them are pretty good, I think) and I’m still amazed at how films come together. From a flicker of an idea to the flickering image onscreen, the whole process is a miracle.”

Hanks added, “Movie-making is very hard work over a very long period of time that consists of so many moments of joy slapped up against an equal number of feelings of self-loathing. It is the greatest job in the world and the most confounding of labors that I know of.”

Hanks previously shared that the idea for a potential sequel to “Forrest Gump” was shut down almost immediately after the success of the first film, which is presumably in his top four “pretty good” film list.

“I will say that, with a long time in between, we did take a stab at talking about another ‘Forrest Gump’ that lasted all of 40 minutes,” Hanks shared. “And then we never, we said, ‘Guys, come on.’”

In the era of multiple sequels, reboots, and requels, Hanks added that there is no “obligation” to reprise his famed role of Forrest after the 1994 original movie, during which he also paid out of pocket for select scenes like Forrest’s iconic run across America.

“A smart thing I did is I’ve never signed a contract that had a contractual obligation to a sequel,” Hanks said. “I’ve always said, ‘Guys, if there’s a reason to do it, let’s do it. But you guys can’t force me.’ There is that natural inclination that is one of pure commerce that says, ‘Hey, you just had a hit, so do it again, and you’ll have a hit.’”

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