The 51st New York Film Festival (NYFF) opened promptly Friday night with the real life based documentary, drama “Captain Phillips” starring Tom Hanks as Captain Richard Phillips. The film is directed by Paul Greengrass, well known for his use of hand held cameras to convey authentic realism. In the film, the cargo ship captained by Hanks is boarded by Somali Pirates who subsequently threaten the lives of him and his crew. The film is based on the actual Captain Phillips whose ship was taken in 2009.
Hanks met with Phillips in his Vermont home multiple times to prepare for the role. “You don’t want to ask, `What were you feeling? What was it like? What were you feeling? Are you a hero?’” Hanks explained to the media crowd at the NYFF. “Ask questions like most journalists do when the time comes,” Hanks said in relation to gathering material to accurately portray the real Captain Phillips journey.
Hanks has been extremely busy this year between the opening of “Captain Phillips” and his Broadway debut in Nora Ephron’s “Lucky Guy.” Later this year, he will play Walt Disney in “Saving Mr.Banks.” “Captain Phillips” opens in theaters on October 11.