Tom Hanks May Have Landed His Next Disney Role

Tom Hanks as Walt Disney in Saving Mr. Banks

Tom Hanks has given us plenty of memorable performances, whether it be in classic comedies like Splash or Big or in more dramatic films like Philadelphia or The Post. Of course, the actor also has a couple of major Disney roles under his belt through the Toy Story franchise and Saving Mr. Banks, in which he played Walt Disney himself. Now, it would appear the veteran actor is preparing for another Disney project, and it’s a reimagining of a classic.

Tom Hanks is set to play Geppetto in Disney’s live-action remake of Pinocchio, which will be directed by one of the actor’s biggest collaborators, Robert Zemeckis. According to Deadline, negotiations are still in the early stages, but Hanks has reportedly reached out to Zemeckis to let him know that he’s interested in the role.

Hanks was originally attached to the role of Geppetto back in 2018, when Paul King was attached to the project as director. But per THR’s Borys Kit, when King departed the project, Hanks reportedly lost interest but, upon hearing of Zemeckis’ involvement, Hanks’ interest was reignited.

Should Tom Hanks officially sign on for the project, this would mark his fourth collaboration with Robert Zemeckis. The two previously worked together on Forrest Gump, Cast Away and The Polar Express. Hanks would receive Best Actor nominations at the Oscars for his work in the first two films and would win for his performance in Forrest Gump.

Zemeckis will direct the film from a screenplay by Chris Weitz, who will also produce the film alongside Andrew Miano under their production company, Depth of Field. As of right now, Disney has not announced a release date for Pinocchio.

Disney’s original Pinocchio film was released in 1940 and told the story of a lonely woodcarver who crafts a wooden puppet and is surprised when a fairy grants his wish for the puppet to brought to life. From there, the cheeky wooden boy finds himself on a wild adventure.

Tom Hanks is currently coming off war thriller Greyhound, which was released on Apple TV+ after its theatrical release date was delayed. And last year, he gave an Oscar-nominated performance as Mr. Rogers in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood and also reprised his fan-favorite role as Woody in Toy Story 4.

Given Hanks’ ability to blend into almost any kind of role, he should be a great fit for Geppetto. Not only can he bring the necessary enthusiasm that comes with such a magical film, but he can also exude the warmth that the man feels for the wooden boy. And with Hanks reuniting with Robert Zemeckis, the two should be able to continue their positive streak and bring something unique to Disney’s growing stable of live-action adaptations.

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Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Erik Swann is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend. He began working with the publication in 2020 when he was hired as Weekend Editor. Today, he continues to write, edit and handle social media responsibilities over the weekend. On weekdays, he also writes TV and movie-related news and helps out with editing and social media as needed. He graduated from the University of Maryland, where he received a degree in Broadcast Journalism. After shifting into multi-platform journalism, he started working as a freelance writer and editor before joining CB. Covers superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. He eats more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.