Hanks, Springsteen talk ‘Philadelphia’ and its director Demme

April 29 (UPI) — Tom Hanks and Bruce Springsteen opened their “Tribeca Talks” conversation Friday night by discussing their shared experience of working on the 1993 drama Philadelphia with director Jonathan Demme.

The event at New York’s Beacon Theatre was part of the Tribeca Film Festival. Among the attendees were former first daughter Malia Obama, filmmaker Robert Rodriguez, broadcast journalist Gayle King and actress Rita Wilson, Hanks’ wife.

“I think probably the strongest union of our two names is from the motion picture Philadelphia. God bless Jonathan Demme, we just lost him,” Hanks said of the renowned director who died this week of complications from cancer at the age of 73.

“He was such an inspirational guy. No Jonathan Demme, no Philadelphia. No Philadelphia, no ‘Streets of Philadelphia,'” Springsteen said of the anthem that won him the Best Original Song Oscar.

“He had Neil Young working first,” Springsteen continued. “Neil came up with ‘Philadelphia,’ which ended the film and [Demme] wanted a rock song for the beginning, so I said, ‘I’d give it a shot.'”

Springsteen said he went into his studio and tried to come up with something, sending the song to Demme even though he wasn’t confident it was what the filmmaker wanted.

“I said, ‘What do you think?’ He said, ‘It’s great.’ And that was it. It took about two days,” the music icon recalled.

“If you ever want to have a great moment in a motion picture, walk out a door and make sure they just put on a Bruce Springsteen song,” said Hanks, who won the Best Actor Oscar for his performance in the film.


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