In a recent Hollywood interview, Oscar award winning actor Tom Hanks stated that he would refuse to screen his new film “The Post” at the White House if he was invited to. The Spielberg directed journalism drama is based on the Washington Post’s actions during the Nixon administration.
Hanks said “I don’t think I would” when asked if he would ever screen the new film alongside President Trump in the White House. He went on to cite neo-Nazi parades and insensitive behaviour towards Native Americans as results of the Trump presidency that have deterred him.
The decision by Hanks is not considered to be a surprise, especially when the plot of the film is taken into consideration. Based on the true story of the publication of the Pentagon Papers by the Washington Post, the film contains obvious commentaries about corruption and obfuscation of facts within the government.
It is considered unlikely that the Trump administration would even consider screening the film to begin with, considering the passive-aggressive stance towards news media portrayals of the government.
Donald Trump has also in the past made public attacks against Hank’s co-star Meryl Streep who is a harsh critic of the administration. Trump called her an “overrated” actor in Hollywood, unworthy of her popularity.
Streep responded to Trump with a scathing speech at the last Academy Awards and started an informal protest by wearing a purse depicting ex-president Barrack Obama dancing with his wife.
Hanks stated in the interview that he thought it was time for Americans to “take to the ramparts” in their condemnation of the current administration. He said that Americans would have to “start voting” in many different ways prior the start of the next election and for him, a refusal to screen the film at the White House is one such vote.
The previous Obama presidency was noted for being extremely friendly with Hollywood, hosting several screenings at the White House, presenting Oscars and mingling with movie stars. The Trump administration has not shared the same report with Hollywood as its predecessors.
This was especially true with backlash following a White House screening of Disney’s “Finding Dory” which closely followed protests against Trump’s executive order, now since authorised, attempting to ban travel from several countries, many of which are Muslim majority.
Since fiascos like that of Finding Dory, the White House has deliberately distanced itself from Hollywood. The Trump administration has largely positioned itself as a harsh enemy of the Hollywood elite who have fought against the administration from the very beginning.