Tom Hanks comes out against woke censorship of old books: ‘Let me decide what I am offended by’

Actor Tom Hanks spoke with the BBC about his new novel and gave his thoughts on censoring older books, referencing his woke publisher Penguin Random House who recently “updated” books by Roald Dahl and PG Wodehouse to get rid of offensive terms.

Hanks’ first book is titled, “The Making of Another Major Motion Picture Masterpiece: A Novel.”

He told BBC host Rebecca Jones that he began writing the book in 2018 after the release of his collection of short stories titled, “Uncommon Type.”

“I wrote in between films, I wrote wherever I was, I wrote on planes, I wrote at home, I wrote on vacation, I wrote in hotel rooms, I wrote on long weekends when I wasn’t working,” Hanks recounted.

His novel addresses the making of a multimillion-dollar superhero action film. It bluntly talks about characters with egos, “cry-babies, psychological train wrecks, on-the-wagon alcoholics, off-the-wagon addicts,” and even discusses the topic of sexual harassment.

“So it’s a surprising admission when the affable voice of Woody in Toy Story confesses: ‘I have pulled every single one of those moments of behavior myself on a set,'” Jones wrote.

“Not everybody is at their best every single day on a motion picture set,” Hanks frankly confessed. “I’ve had tough days trying to be a professional when my life has been falling apart in more ways than one and the requirement for me that day is to be funny, charming, and loving – and it’s the last way I feel.”

The BBC host turned to the subject of censorship in books and asked Hanks about his publisher modifying classics.

“With such bad behavior in his novel, the actor-writer also believes it is unnecessary to airbrush classic books for modern audiences,” Jones commented.

“Novels by Ian Fleming and Agatha Christie have been updated, and Hanks’ own publisher Penguin Random House has altered the work of Roald Dahl and PG Wodehouse as part of an effort to remove potentially offensive language,” she noted.

“I’m of the opinion that we’re all grown-ups here. Let’s have faith in our own sensibilities as opposed to having somebody decide what we may or may not be offended by,” Hanks responded.

“Let me decide what I am offended by and what I’m not offended by. I would be against reading any book from any era that says ‘abridged due to modern sensitivities,’” he contended.

Fleming’s secret agent James Bond is mentioned in Hank’s book, too. He solidly believes that Idris Elba should be the next 007.

“Understand this,” Hanks said. “James Bond has a license to kill. I would issue that license to Idris Elba just based on the work that I’ve seen him do.”

Jones went on to ask Hanks about his next book as well.

“So what next? Another novel would be ‘nice’, but not for a few years due to a busy filming schedule,” Jones reported. “But the desire to write is always there, he says.”

“It’s just the best way to spend one’s time outside of being with those that you love and make you laugh,” Hanks remarked.

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