Forrest Gump Winston Groom: While most great actors cannot be reduced to a single role, it is undeniable that Forrest Gump occupies a central part of Tom Hanks‘legacy. Robert Zemeckis’ 1994 comedy-drama has permanently entered the American cultural consciousness, even though its critical value has been routinely reevaluated by scholars and audiences alike. One notable figure who wasn’t exactly mesmerised by the movie in the first place was none other than author Winston Groom.
Forrest Gump Winston Groom, Groom, whose reputation as an author was undoubtedly boosted by the incredible popularity of the film adaptation, was annoyed by a number of things related to the production. In addition to the arduous production process that resulted in multiple disagreements between him and Hollywood executives, the final product contained changes from the source material, which Groom thought detracted from the uniqueness of his original vision.
Forrest Gump Winston Groom
Forrest Gump Winston Groom, When asked about the initial part of the production, Groom recalled the turbulences. He said: “First, it was about eight years of production hell just getting it there. Our deal was originally with Warner Brothers, but they turned it over to Paramount. I wrote a lot of scripts. Part of the problem was that Gump was 6’6 and 240 pounds in the novel. They couldn’t find an actor big enough to play him. So they told me to rewrite him.”
Forrest Gump Winston Groom, Although the author enjoyed Hanks’ performance, he was disappointed by Zemeckis’ refusal to delve deeper into some of the novel’s political tangents. A spat with the studio about his box office share also contributed to his dislike of the Hollywood apparatus. However, the issue that plagued him the most was the movie’s famous line, “Life is like a box of chocolates”, which had been changed from the original, “Being an idiot is no box of chocolates.”
Forrest Gump Winston Groom, In an interview with The Telegraph, Groom went on a famous tirade against this change: “Why the hell didn’t they use my line? Why are they using this line? Well, what do I know? Everywhere I go, people send me chocolates. I hate chocolates!” Despite his annoyance, he admitted that the screenwriters were onto something because it immediately caught on with fans: “It’s on everybody’s tongue, the box of chocolates business.”
Forrest Gump Winston Groom, The production affected Groom so much that he protested against the adaptation in the novel’s 1995 sequel Gump and Co, where Forrest Gump says: “Don’t ever let nobody make a movie of your life’s story.” That might be one of the major reasons why the adaptation of the sequel never happened since Hanks said that the talks “lasted all of 40 minutes”.