Tom Hanks Apologizes for Blackface Video

Conservatives try linking 2004 video to actor's support for Obama
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 23, 2012 3:43 AM CDT
Updated Mar 23, 2012 5:00 AM CDT
Hanks Apologizes for Blackface Video
Tom Hanks apologized yesterday for a video of a 2004 fundraiser that showed him playfully interacting with a man dressed in blackface. Hanks called it "hideously offensive."   (mynewsmedia)

(Newser) – Tom Hanks has apologized for a 2004 video—calling it "hideously offensive"—that shows him and Glenn Frey from the Eagles playfully interacting with a man in blackface at a fundraising event at his son's school, reports the New York Daily News. The video surfaced Tuesday on the Daily Caller, and it shows a man in blackface appearing on stage with a large gorilla doll. In response, Hanks says “Ladies and gentlemen, a celebrity in our midst! Who would have thought that Bill O’Reilly would join us?” The Daily Caller tried linking the video to Hanks' recent narration of the 17-minute campaign video for President Obama, The Road We've Traveled, quoting people who said Hanks' voiceover should be removed.

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"I was blindsided when one of the parents got up on the stage in a costume that was hideously offensive then and is hideously offensive now," said Hanks. "I used Bill O'Reilly as the punch line of an uncomfortable joke that was hardly funny," he added. As for O'Reilly, he seemed to let the incident go, saying "everybody makes mistakes. I don't think that Hanks had anything [in mind] other than trying to get a wise-guy line off." (Read more Tom Hanks stories.)

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