If you know about their reputation for being two of the nicest people in Hollywood, then you’d be surprised that Tom Hanks or Henry Winkler would have a feud with anyone, let alone each other. But it’s true! Reportedly, the tension between the two actors dates all the way back in 1989 when they were working on the movie Turner & Hooch together. That’s right—this feud began with a movie about a crime-solving dog.
These days, matters seem to be resolved between Hanks and Winkler, but one of their mutual friends, director Ron Howard, has confirmed that things weren’t always so friendly. Plus, Winkler made the occasional comment about his relationship with Hanks over the years—sometimes, just to jokingly fuel the fire.
Read on to find out more about this unlikely Hollywood clash.
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Winkler was hired to direct the 1989 movie Turner & Hooch, which stars Hanks as a detective who solves a crime with the help of a dog. It has long been thought that Winkler was replaced because he and Hanks didn’t get along.
During a 2019 appearance on Watch What Happens Live, Winkler explained, “I was directing that movie for 13 days, and then I was called into [producer] Jeff Katzenberg‘s office, and he said, ‘Do you have everything with you? Go home.'”
In 1993, Winkler was interviewed by People and said, “Let’s just say I got along better with Hooch [the dog] than I did with Turner [Hanks].”
More recently, during his Watch What Happens Live appearance, the Barry star said, “I got along great, great with that dog. Love that dog.” When he was asked if he ever watched the film, he joked, “I don’t remember the title of that movie.”
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Howard knows both stars very well. He worked with Winkler on Happy Days for many years, of course. And he’s directed Hanks in five movies: Splash, Apollo 13, and the three Da Vinci Code films.
“It was disappointing,” Howard told The Guardian in 2020 of Hanks and Winkler not getting along on Turner & Hooch. “I’m friends with them both and both men felt compelled to come to talk to me about it. It was just one of those unfortunate things where they really had a working style that did not fit. I know it was painful for both of them and I was able to lend an ear, if not offer any solutions.”
Howard was also asked if things remained strained between them to this day. “Oh no, they’ve both been invited to my birthday parties. It’s been a lot of years, two men with a lot of water under the bridge,” he explained.
Hanks has never spoken publicly about his relationship with Winkler, but in 2020, Winkler told TMZ in no uncertain terms, “I don’t have a feud with Tom Hanks,” and that there was nothing left there to gossip about. The actor also recalled that he had just seen Hanks at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and “it was beautiful,” and said that they’d taken a picture together at a Bruno Mars concert.
Addressing his comments on Watch What Happens Live, Winkler shrugged them off as a joke. “That was just fun,” he said.
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Tom Hanks’ Decades-Long Feud With This Star Is “Painful,” Friend Says — Best Life