Wes Anderson has spent the last 20 or so years building up one of the great rosters of quirky weirdos in recent cinematic history, a touring company of oddballs built up around ground-floor stars like Owen and Luke Wilson and Bill Murray. Now, Anderson has reportedly landed one of the biggest names of all for his next (next) film: Tom Hanks, who will apparently be co-starring with Murray and Tilda Swinton in Anderson’s follow-up to this fall’s The French Dispatch.
This is per THR, which reports that noted birthday DJ and certified Genial, Smiling Man Tom Hanks will now add his star power to the as-yet untitled film. That same report suggests that Hanks’ role in the movie will be a small one, but you know how that goes: Once the Anderson company has its hooks in you, it’s hell to get out. (It’s somewhat similar in that regard to the roving band of earnest character actors employed by the Coen brothers, although it’s worth noting that Hanks is one of the few actors to ever be one-and-done with that pair, too. Truly, the power of The Ladykillers knows no bounds.)
Very little is known at present about this new Anderson movie, beyond the fact that it’s set to be filmed in Spain, that Adrien Brody is also expected to star, and that Anderson, as usual, will be directing his own script. Which leaves us with nothing to do, really, but speculate wildly about what kind of role Hanks might be taking once he steps into these carefully composed shots. Maybe he’ll play against type, Cloud Atlas-style, and take on the villain of the piece—perhaps a snarling viscount with an impeccably tailored jacket. Or maybe he’ll lend those Hanks-ian charms to some kind of memorable service worker, who imparts somewhat loopy wisdom to the other characters. Or maybe he’ll just do a scene with Willem Dafoe. Dang: We’d really like to see Tom Hanks do a fun little scene with Willem Dafoe.