When Tom Hanks met Bill Paxton on the set of 1995’s Apollo 13, he was only familiar with one of Paxton’s roles.
“I really only knew him as the ‘Game over’ guy from Aliens,” he says in an exclusive clip from the “A True Original: Remembering Bill Paxton” featurette on the Blu-Ray/DVD for their final film together, The Circle.
When Hanks, 61, told his late costar it immediately became a running gag between the two, especially since the Oscar-winning film was a big, exciting project for Paxton, who died from a stroke in February.
“Bill had this Joker-ish smile on his face and by that I mean it took over his whole face, he was just grinning,” Hanks reveals. “He’d been ninth banana in so many movies already, so that he was in a real studio film, this was a big deal for him.”
Apollo 13 starred Hanks, Paxton and Kevin Bacon, 59. It was nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and took home two Oscars. The camaraderie between the three grew as they spent large amounts of time together in enclosed spaces, killing time with lengthy, spirited conversation.
“If you could’ve been piped into our radio channel when we’re in our pressure helmets, there were only four people on it,” Hanks says, including the film’s director Ron Howard, who was connected to the actors via a head set. “If we were laying there for 40 minutes while they’re monkeying around with stuff, the conversation between the three of us, it went everywhere from talking about our kids, sodomy jokes, stories about things we’d done, it was pretty good conversation,” he shared.
“Kevin is all sardonic, he’s the guy who would give you the 16-word phrase at the end of the story that would summarize what someone was just talking about,” he adds. “I was the guy asking questions and Bill was Mr. Enthusiasm. It was hilarious.”
The Circle is available on DVD and Blu-ray August 1.