Tom Hanks talks sexual harassment in Hollywood: “It’s never too late to change things”

Hanks made the comments in conversation with James Franco, John Boyega, Gary Oldman, Willem Dafoe and Sam Rockwell

Tom Hanks has discussed the current state of the Hollywood movie industry, in the wake of widespread allegations of sexual assault.

Speaking as part of a Hollywood Reporter Actor Roundtable discussion alongside fellow actors James Franco, John Boyega, Gary Oldman, Willem Dafoe and Sam Rockwell, the Forrest Gump megastar remarked that “it’s never too late to change things… and that’s the responsibility of anybody who wants to obey a code of professional ethics.”

Speaking on why he thinks Hollywood is so rife with sexual assault cases, Hanks continued: “There can be that type of predatory aspect on a set because you think, ‘Well, we’re in the circus and we’re on the road, so therefore, do the rules really apply? They don’t really apply.’ There’s the other aspect of it is that, ‘Come try to get this job from me. You want me to give you a job? Come on. Come. Come prove to me that you want this job.’ That’s a sin, and that’s against the law and that is a degree of harassment and predatory behaviour that goes against an assumed code of ethics.”

Previously as part of THR’s Actress Roundtable, Jennifer Lawrence revealed that standing up for herself on set led her to fear her job was threatened.

She continued by stating that these incidents are commonplace in Hollywood, and she believes contribute to a culture of harassment and subsequent silence from victims.

“I was called difficult and a nightmare,” she adds. “I think a lot of people aren’t coming forward because they’re afraid they’re not going to work again. You need to be able to say, ‘This is wrong’ and have somebody do something about it instead of saying, ‘Oh, it’s wrong? Well, you’re fired.’”