So, off I went. The talk was scheduled to start at 4:00 p.m., and I went early to make sure I could get a seat in the theater. I ended up in the back row, but I did have a seat! I was about an hour early, so I passed the time with my Kindle.
Tom Hanks was great. I'm sure that comes as a shock to you, because Tom Hanks is so well known for his mediocre work. He was there to discuss his new film Larry Crowne, which he directed and starred in. They showed a clip of the film, then Tom discussed a bit of the filmmaking process generally, and shared a few tidbits about Larry Crowne specifically. For instance, he talked about the character of Larry riding a scooter, and how the hair and makeup people didn't want him to be able to just ride up into a scene and take his helmet off because then his hair would be a mess. (Tom told them to just not worry about it, so I guess we can all look forward to his messy hair in the film!) He also said that they bought the scooter used in the movie from a retired vet who was going back to school - they saw the scooter parked on campus, thought it was perfect for the movie, and left a note for the owner to get in touch with them. The owner obviously eventually did, and now his scooter is famous!
Tom Hanks speaking at the Apple Store
Watching a clip from Larry Crowne
After his talk they opened things up to a Q&A session with the audience. During that time Tom talked about actually having music playing as they filmed dialogue for Philadelphia (apparently a rarity in the movie-making biz), reluctantly mentioned Castaway as one of the films he is most proud of, and gave the advice to aspiring filmmakers/screenwriters/whatever to just keep doing it, keep practicing, keep making it happen. He told the audience that Steven Spielberg (oh yes, Tom Hanks name-dropped!) gets tons of screenplays sent to him, and he just can't read all of them. But if someone sends him a short video they made, he will watch it, because those people have done the whole process - wrote it, directed it, put it together. He always watches those. How cool is that?
Also, for the record, Tom Hanks is a Mac, not a PC. To quote him (pardon my/his French), "PCs are shit." Hear hear, Tom. This using-a-Macbook-this-very-moment, iPod-loving, iPhone-coveting (GET WITH IT, SPRINT), iPad-longing girl agrees.
For any of you Tom Hanks fans out there, if you're interested in hearing his full talk you will be able to download the free podcast on iTunes soon! Just search for "Meet the Filmmaker" in the iTunes store and you should be able to find it.
So there you have it - yet another cool NYC event that popped up out of nowhere. On top of that, Eric and I went to a "Movie Under the Stars" at Pier A Park last night, to see Breakfast at Tiffany's, complete with a Grimaldi's Pizza picnic. I'll share more about that tomorrow, but honestly - how cool is it that my "boring, nothing to do" day turned into a Q&A session with Tom Hanks, followed by a classic movie with some of the best pizza in New York and a view of the city skyline behind the movie screen? This city never ceases to amaze me.