Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg on 'Indiana Jones 5' and Saving 'Forrest Gump'

Gwynne Watkins
Writer, Yahoo Entertainment

Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images)

Steven Spielberg is keen to make Indiana Jones 5 — even if it puts Tom Hanks and Harrison Ford in competition for “actor who’s made the most Spielberg movies.” In an exclusive conversation about their new film Bridge of Spies, director Spielberg and star Hanks shared stories about the movies they’ve made and speculated about their next collaboration.

“We’ve gotta figure this out because now, Tom is tied with Harrison Ford: Harrison and I did four movies, Tom and I have done four movies,” Spielberg explained. “Now I’ll probably do an Indy 5 with Harrison, [so] it’ll be five for Harrison, four for Tom.”  

Fortunately for Hanks, Spielberg has plans to reconcile this imbalance. After the next Indiana Jones, he said, “I’ve got to make another one with Tom, that’ll be five for Tom, five for Harrison. And I think I’m going to leapfrog that way for the rest of my career. With Daniel Day-Lewis in everything else!”

Plans for Indiana Jones 5 were confirmed by producer Kathleen Kennedy in May, though she specified there was no timeline and “we haven’t started working on a script yet.” Spielberg’s quote suggests that both he and Harrison Ford are on board for the sequel, though neither has officially said as much.

Watch them talk about ‘Indiana Jones 5:’

Here are some more highlights from Hanks and Spielberg’s conversation with Yahoo Movies.

If each were forced to watch one of their own movies, they’d choose That Thing You Do and Raiders of the Lost Ark, respectively. (But they’d rather not.)
“The only movie of [mine] that I can watch over and over again is That Thing You Do, because I wrote it,” Hanks said of his 1996 comedy about a ‘60s pop band. For Hanks (who also directed), it was a positive working experience, with a great cast, “infectiously fabulous” music, and a final product that “came out the way I imagined.” His fourth child was also born during the making of the film, which adds to the happy memories.

But for the most part, Hanks hates watching his own movies. “The problem with these movies that you’re in, is they never change,” he told the audience. “Once you see them, it’s not like they’re longer or better, or there’s a better angle of you — they’re locked in stone, and if you hate any moment of it, you hate it for the rest of eternity. I leave the room sometimes when they come on.”

Spielberg concurred, with one exception. “I have trouble watching my movies, except I can watch them when I’m showing them to my kids for the first time,” he said. “Like, I won’t watch E.T. by myself, but I’ve shown E.T. to every one of my seven children at the appropriate age, and I’ve enjoyed watching a movie like that that I made through their eyes, because I see it in a different way every time.” That said, if he had to watch one of his movies alone, Spielberg would go with Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Watch them talk about their old movies:

Unlike certain other filmmakers, Spielberg doesn’t mind watching video on his phone.
“My generation didn’t have that,” Spielberg said of streaming media. “We had TV and movies, that was it. But my kids, and myself, we have so many opportunities to see what so many people are thinking about the world and how they see the world and how they’re expressing it. So this is one of the most golden times I think we’ve ever experienced.”

Tom Hanks’s hair is white because of his next role.
Hanks explained to the crowd that he dyed his hair for the title role in Clint Eastwood’s Sully, the story of heroic US Airlines pilot Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger. “It’s very hard to dye my hair white, it turns out,” Hanks revealed. “It took a lot of time and eventually they had to stop doing it, because it was white enough, and the lady at the salon said, ‘Your scalp can’t take any more of this.’”

Tom Hanks saved Forrest Gump by personally financing one famous scene.
“The studio was one day away from pulling the plug on this one movie I was going to make, and the director came out to my house and said, ‘Look, this is going to fall apart because they won’t give us the budget for shooting this one sequence, and we’ve got to have this sequence,’” Hanks recalled. Director Robert Zemeckis proposed that he and Hanks split the cost of shooting that sequence, so that the studio would allow them to make the film they envisioned. “I said, ‘All right.’ And the sequence was Forrest running across the country,” Hanks revealed. “And we were 48 hours away from it being shut down. So I’m glad that worked out.”

Watch them talk about the movies they almost didn’t make: