Tom Hanks on lessons from the past for journalists: ‘No. 1, never stop, but No. 2, it’s got to be right.’

December 15, 2017

Tom Hanks sat down with Washington Post executive editor Marty Baron on Thursday night to talk about "The Post." That movie, which will open in theaters next week, portrays The Washington Post under publisher Katharine Graham and editor Ben Bradlee as it reported the Pentagon Papers. 

Baron asked Hanks about what lessons journalists today can learn from the man Hanks portrays in the film, Bradlee.

"I'm gonna tell ya," Hanks says. "Not to get it wrong. This is another thing he said. You have to have all the confidence in the world that that story you're putting on the front page is the truth. 'Cause if it's not, he said, you have to eat it for 24 hours, and it doesn't taste good."

That was when journalists had at least a day to make their corrections, Hanks said. 

"If I was going to divine what is the lesson to learn from then and now, it's No. 1, never stop, but No. 2, it's got to be right."

What's your favorite movie about journalism? Some widely known media figures shared their favorite 10 this week with The Post. Last year, after a film about the powerful work of journalists at The Boston Globe won an Academy Award, we made a list for Hollywood with other Pulitzer-winning work that's worthy of the big screen. 

Here's some of the Baron and Hanks interview: