Captain Phillips star Tom Hanks talks diabetes, weight loss and why he loves Aston Villa

Actor says dieting for movie roles had nothing to do with diagnosis.

Tom Hanks recently made the headlines when the legendary everyman actor revealed in a US TV interview he’d been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.

Within hours of the interview, rumours about the causes of Hank’s condition began to appear (including in our own article, here) with journalists and health experts pointing the finger at the actor’s infamous dieting and weight gains for various movie roles. But Hanks doesn’t agree:

“I think that’s a canard. It’d probably be easy to say that,” he told us. “That would have meant that all the time I lost weight I was ridiculously healthy, and I think I still had it then, based on my natural predisposition and an awful lot of lifestyle choices.”

[Tom Hanks Diagnosed With Type 2 Diabetes]

So what does the actor, who famously lost 26 pounds to play AIDS sufferer Andrew Beckett in ‘Philadelphia’ (a performance that bagged him his first Oscar), think of other actors transforming their bodies for film?

“Look, you utilise any tool at your disposal, particularly if you’re younger man,” defended Hanks. “I mean I’m not gonna do it now, I’m 57. There’s no way I’m gonna put on a bunch of weight for the sake of a role. But when you can, if it’s a tool at your disposal, you’ll go there.”

 We also got chance to ask the star about his famous love for football team Aston Villa, at which point he revealed he’d never actually seen a match.

“I saw them play in Portland,” he laughed. “I have not been up to Birmingham to see an actual match. I gotta gear up for that man.

[Captain Phillips' heroism denied by crew]

He did tell us, however, what it was about the Birmingham team that won him over in the first place… their name, of course.

“Listen, the reason I’m a fan of them is because their name sounds so pleasant, ‘Ah, Aston Villa’. Sounds like a lovely vacation spot we might go to, and I bet it is. I’m on my way. I don’t know when but I’m on my way.”

We'd love it if Hanks had a holiday in Birmingham.

Watch our full interview with Tom above, including what he thinks about ‘Captain Phillips’ being called his “comeback” film, and when he met the movies’ real-life heroes.

‘Captain Phillips’, directed by Paul Greengrass, is out in the UK 18 October 2013.