Tom Hanks addresses whether retirement is on the horizon

Tom Hanks - A Man Called Otto
A Man Called Otto

Actor Tom Hanks continues to have an impressive career at age 66, having appeared in almost 80 feature films, not to mention countless television shows and stage productions. But at a certain age and point in one’s career the subject of retirement comes up, naturally. Hanks revealed in a recent interview that he does not desire to retire, but is picky about what projects he decides to take on.

“No, I don’t have any desire [to retire]. I’m not working for the sake of working,” Hanks revealed to Variety at the premiere for his latest film, A Man Called Otto. “I’m in a very lucky position. It’s got to be fabulous. Rita and I talk about it all the time, which is there’s only two reasons go to work: It’ll be good or it’ll be fun. And if it’s neither one of those, I’ll stay home until the cows come on. I don’t need to do anything.”

Hanks’ latest character Otto was not so lucky. The film is based on the Swedish book A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman, which was also made into a 2015 movie. When it was adapted for American audiences, changes were made.

Hank explains these changes. “There was a mandatory retirement in the original movie in Sweden. You got to a certain age, you’re out! And that’s the way things work,” he stated.

The American version puts a different spin on this because of culture differences. “Here, it was he had been bought out, he took a severance pay — he didn’t want to quit. There was no reason to stay because they had no more faith in him,” Hanks explained.

A Man Called Otto tells the story of a curmudgeon named Otto Anderson who is deeply depressed after losing his job and his wife, Sonya. He attempts to end his life several times, until his worldview is changed by a new family who moves into his neighborhood. Otto learns that he can still make a positive impact on the world through his connection to his neighbors. The film was directed by Marc Forster and written by David Magee. It is currently playing in movie theaters.