The Academy Award winner, 57, plays Captain Richard Phillips in the flick, based on the seaman’s book on the real-life 2009 hijacking of his cargo ship by Somali pirates.

Hanks told ITK it was an unusual time to be in the nation’s capital, during a partial government shutdown, saying, “I think it’s unfortunate that we can’t get together and really do the right things … And I think our politicians have to do the right thing.”

{mosads}The dad of two continued in an accent reminiscent of his Massachusetts roots, “I think this country puts these people in that position to do a job, and Lord knows, if we don’t do our job, we don’t stay there, so I think has to hold true for them also.”

When we inquired whether there are any lawmakers who he’d like to bring aboard a ship, he offered a hearty chuckle, saying, “I’ll steer the ship, they just need to steer the country. They do their job, I’ll do mine.”

A VIP crowd — many clad in U.S. Navy uniforms — packed an auditorium for the D.C. screening. Hanks, director Paul Greengrass, and actor Barkhad Abdi — who plays the role of the Somali pirate captain — introduced the dramatic, seat-gripping movie to wild applause.

As he walked offstage before the start of the film, Hanks could be heard quipping, “All those guys from Congress didn’t come.”

“Captain Phillips” opens nationwide on Oct. 11.


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