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Rita Wilson clarifies 'terse' Cannes red carpet photo with Tom Hanks: what really happened

The Asteroid City stars looked delighted to be there


Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson attend the "Asteroid City" red carpet during the 76th annual Cannes film festival at Palais des Festivals© Getty Images
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad Sanwari - New York
Senior WriterNew York
May 24, 2023
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The 76th Cannes Film Festival was a heady experience to be sure for the cast and crew of Wes Anderson's Asteroid City, all of whom brought their A-game to the red carpet.

Joining them were Asteroid cast members and Hollywood power couple Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, plus their 28-year-old son Truman Hanks.

Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson attend the "Asteroid City" red carpet during the 76th annual Cannes film festival at Palais des Festivals© Getty Images
Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson attend the Asteroid City red carpet

However, their adorably loved-up display was quickly overshadowed by viral pictures of them seemingly engaging in an intense discussion with a staffer on the carpet, which many on social media deemed "terse" or "angry."

MORE: Meet Tom Hanks' famous son Truman – who stars alongside him in new film

Wilson, 66, wasn't having it, though, and quickly took to social media to clear the air on the photos, explaining that they were nothing more than moments of confusion.

Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson seen in the midst of an intense discussion with a red carpet staffer at the 76th Cannes Film Festival© Getty Images
The actors were seen in the midst of an intense discussion with a red carpet staffer

Alongside a screenshot of one outlet running with the story, she wrote: "This is called 'I can't hear you. People are screaming. What did you say? Where are we supposed to go?'

"But that doesn't sell stories! Nice try. We had a great time! Go see Asteroid City!"

MORE: Tom Hanks pays moving tribute to man who inspired iconic role

Beyond the moment of brief confusion, the couple were a hit, with Hanks, 66, often stepping aside to let his wife of 35 years shine in her gorgeous black dress.

Rita Wilson clears the air on the viral Cannes Film Festival photos on Instagram© Instagram
Wilson cleared the air on the viral Cannes photos

They were joined by the director and the rest of the glittery principal cast, including Maya Hawke, Scarlett Johansson, Adrien Brody, Rupert Friend, Bryan Cranston, and more.

RELATED: Uma Thurman's lookalike daughter Maya Hawke steals the limelight in green princess gown

The film, which releases in theaters on June 16, received its premiere screening at the famed French film festival, coming on the heels of Hanks' debut novel, The Making of Another Major Motion Picture, which was released on May 9.

WATCH: Asteroid City, premiering at Cannes Film Festival

Not all press for the book was positive, however, as it quickly received mixed to negative early reviews from the likes of The New York Times, The Observer, and The Sunday Times, to name a few.

In an interview with the BBC on May 8, the actor shared just what he thought of the criticism, and he was taking it in his stride.

READ: How Julia Roberts broke the norm at Cannes – and Jennifer Lawrence did it too

He acknowledged his privilege as one of Hollywood's most powerful and celebrated stars: Unlike most authors, he published his novel without the rigamarole of agents, publishers, rejections, and endless rewrites, simply saying: "It's not fair."

Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson attend the Asteroid City red carpet at The 76th Annual Cannes Film Festival© Getty Images
The Oscar-winner gave his wife the spotlight on the carpet

Hanks did say, though, that he was largely unfazed by the critical feedback — he's used to it thanks to his "day job as a movie star...[I am] stronger when it comes down to really being torn apart."

The synopsis for the 448-page novel says that it is "a wildly ambitious story of the making of a colossal, star-studded, multimillion-dollar superhero action film, and the humble comic book that inspired it all."

SEE: Scarlet Johansson exposes her back tattoo in peek-a-boo bra dress

The book features a host of wacky characters as well, including an eccentric director and a difficult actor, with the two-time Oscar winner acknowledging that he has been those people in different scenarios.

Iris Knobloch, Jason Schwartzman, Jeffrey Wright, Rupert Friend, Rita Wilson, Tom Hanks, Alexandre Desplat, Bryan Cranston, Wes Anderson, Adrien Brody, Scarlett Johansson, Matt Dillon, Fisher Stevens, Steve Carell, Stephen Park, Jake Ryan and Hope Davis a© Getty Images
The cast of Wes Anderson's Asteroid City at Cannes

"I have pulled every single one of those moments of behavior myself on a set. Not everybody is at their best every single day on a motion picture set," he said.

Check out more photos from the star-studded 76th Cannes Film Festival below:

Scarlett Johansson and Colin Jost attend the "Asteroid City" red carpet during the 76th annual Cannes film festival at Palais des Festivals on May 23, 2023 in Cannes, France.© Getty Images
Scarlett Johansson and Colin Jost attend the "Asteroid City" red carpet
US director Sam Levinson, French-US actress Lily-Rose Depp and Canadian singer Abel Tesfaye, The Weeknd, arrive for the premiere of The Idol © Getty Images
Sam Levinson, Lily-Rose Depp, and Abel Tesfaye, The Weeknd, arrive for the premiere of The Idol
Natalie Portman and her co-star Charles Melton attend the May December red carpet screening at the Cannes Film Festival © Getty Images
Natalie Portman and her co-star Charles Melton attend the May December red carpet screening
Director Sahra Mani, Jennifer Lawrence, Justine Ciarrocchi and guest sattend the "Anatomie D'une Chute (Anatomy Of A Fall)" red carpet © Getty Images
Director Sahra Mani, Jennifer Lawrence, Justine Ciarrocchi, and guest sattend the "Anatomie D'une Chute (Anatomy Of A Fall)" red carpet
catherine zeta jones michael douglas and cerys red carpet © Getty Images
Michael Douglas flanked by wife Catherine Zeta-Jones and daughter Carys Zeta-Jones
"Indiana Jones And The Dial Of Destiny" Red Carpet - The 76th Annual Cannes Film Festival© Getty Images
Calista Flockhart joins Harrison Ford on the Indiana Jones and The Dial of Destiny red carpet
Uma Thurman and her Son Levon Roan Thurman-Hawke © Getty Images
Uma Thurman and her Son Levon Roan Thurman-Hawke at Cannes
helen mirren with new blue hairstyle© Getty Images
Helen Mirren showing off her new blue hair on the Cannes red carpet

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