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  6. Philadelphia at How Tom Hanks fought homophobia and transformed his career | The Independent.

The film was No. After their initial conversation, it still took Demme and Nyswaner four years to come up with a script that lived up to their ambitions for the film. For the first two of those years, all they did was bat around possible plots and genres.

Eventually, they settled on the reassuring structure of the courtroom drama, which would allow an audience to watch their protagonist actively participate in fighting discrimination, rather than just passively withering away from AIDS. Andy decides to sue for wrongful termination. He initially begs off working with Andy out of his fear of AIDS and loathing of gay people, and only agrees to take the case after he witnesses Andy experiencing the kind of casual discrimination in a law library that Joe knows all too well as a black man trying to build a career as a lawyer.

Andy and Miguel do touch and kiss and bicker with each other as any other couple would. But of all the criticisms of Philadelphia when it first opened, one of the most pointed was that their relationship felt half-baked. Today, Nyswaner agrees — in hindsight.

But he also expressed regret that a scene he wrote, and Hanks and Banderas shot, of the couple talking together in bed was ultimately cut from the finished film. But, you know, in retrospect, that scene could have been included, and the movie still would have been just as embraced by audiences. He would actually throw somebody out of the editing room if they had said that.

Was It Good For The Gays: ‘Philadelphia’

That was over. Once again, Philadelphia stands out: Films and TV shows about LGBT people have certainly proliferated in pop culture since , but stories about queer people coming out still predominate, especially in films about queer teens. Just like Tony Soprano gets to be everything that Tony Soprano is.

Well, as retrograde as unvarnished bigotry can feel in , anyway. He was stopped on the street by fans.

Two decades ago, Tom Hanks and 'Philadelphia' prompted changing attitudes toward HIV-AIDS - WHYY

People were pretty blunt about how they felt about gay people who were carriers of this fatal disease. When the movie was released, there still was no AIDS cocktail. And when you combined it with homosexuality, it blew their minds. Today, an HIV-positive diagnosis in the US means a lifelong commitment to a demanding and expensive drug cocktail regimen.

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  • Looking Back at 'Philadelphia,' 25 Years Later | Arts & Culture | Smithsonian.
  • But thanks to those drugs, HIV-positive people can now lead rich and complete lives. The list of major feature films about AIDS, however, is still embarrassingly slim, and, for Nyswaner, far too focused on white people in North America. The most poignant and heartbreaking aspect of Philadelphia now is how it stands as one of the only documents — and certainly the most well known — of what it meant to be alive at that time, and of the people who no longer are.

    On Jan. I am oblivion. AIDS was scary, and those suffering from the virus were, to most people, either tragic victims or monsters. Tom Hanks stars as Andrew Beckett, a promising attorney who keeps his identity as a gay man — and his HIV-positive status — secret from his colleagues. As his health begins to fail and lesions begin to appear on his face, he is unceremoniously fired; he is told by his bosses that his attitude and performance are the problem. Seeing it two decades after its release was an interesting experience. What Philadelphia accomplished, with Tom Hanks — the friendly, safe, non-threatening Hollywood actor — acting as an avatar of inequality, pain, and suffering he deservedly won an Oscar for Best Actor in for the role , was giving those affected by the AIDS epidemic a humanity.

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    Andrew Beckett was depicted not just as a victim, but as the Everyman: His death was inevitable; the film takes place at a time when treatments were tricky and experimental and men and women of all backgrounds were dying by the thousands. Yes, Andrew Beckett dies in the end just after hearing the news that he won his case.

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    Two decades ago, Tom Hanks and ‘Philadelphia’ prompted changing attitudes toward HIV-AIDS

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