There’s no doubt that Tom Hanks is a good actor — after all, he has two Academy Awards with another three nominations for good measure — but apparently, he’s so good in real life that he can’t play villainous roles.
In a New York Times profile published ahead of the release of his latest film, A Beautiful Day In The Neighbourhood, in which Tom plays Mister Rogers, he said that he knows everyone thinks of him as a good guy.
“I recognised in myself a long time ago that I don’t instill fear in anybody,” the actor said. “Now, that’s different than being nice, you know? I think I have a cache of mystery. But it’s not one of malevolence.”
And indeed, that lack of malevolence means that he just can’t pull off playing the role of the bad guy.
“It’s because I never get them, because bad guys, by and large, require some degree of malevolence that I don’t think I can fake,” he explained.
Still, Tom assured readers that he’s not all good. In fact, he may be using that good guy charm to manipulate us, just a little bit.
“Let’s not call this a dark side, but: I realised, and I used over and over again, the ability to seduce a room, seduce a group of people, and that it started off when I was very young as a self-defense mechanism but then turned into a manipulative kind of thing, because I didn’t realise that I was as good at it as I was,” he said.
“And part of that is I am not malevolent. I’m not mysterious. You’re not going to get a huge amount of anger out of me or anything like that. I’m not coming in to dominate a room, but I am coming in to seduce it somehow,” he added.
So, Tom Hanks knows he’s charming us, seducing us into loving him as much as we do, and is even happy to tell us as much. Is it bad that this just made us love him even more?!
You win this round, Hanks.