Here's what really happened in *that* tense photo of Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson on the red carpet at Cannes

Rita Wilson has shared the truth behind the viral photo of husband Tom Hanks having a seemingly heated exchange with a Cannes staff member

What really happened in photo of Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson at Cannes 2023
(Image credit: Getty)

Rita Wilson has set the record straight about those photos of her and husband Tom Hanks on the red carpet at Cannes 2023. 

The US actor hit headlines on Tuesday after images of him at the French Film Festival went viral. 

In the photos, which were taken at the premiere of Wes Anderson's new movie, Asteroid City, Hanks appears to be engaged in a tense exchange with a Cannes staff member. 

The 66-year-old's brow is furrowed and his finger is pointing, prompting online commenters to speculate that the conversation was actually an altercation. Hanks' wife, Rita Wilson, also appears to be flustered in the photos. 

It wasn't long before the snaps began spreading like wildfire on social media, leaving folks everywhere desperate to know the real story behind the interaction. The photos received so much attention that Wilson, who normally stays out of Internet gossip, took to her Instagram to clear the air. 


(Image credit: Getty)

The 66-year-old revealed that she and Tom needed to raise their voices in order to ask for directions amid the chaos. 

"This is called ‘I can’t hear you. People are screaming. What did you say? Where are we supposed to go?’” the American actress captioned the infamous photo. "We had a great time. Go see Asteroid City!" 

The clarification comes shortly after it was reported that selfies are banned at the Cannes Film Festival for a very peculiar reason. 

The man in the photo, who has since identified as Cannes red carpet manager Vincent Chapalain, has also backed up Rita's version of events. 


(Image credit: Getty)

"They just asked me if they should go back to the start of the mat with the rest of the film crew (I’m not security) wink," he wrote online after being questioned about the incident. 

Hanks and Wilson both appear in Wes Anderson's Asteroid City, a sci-fi romantic comedy about a 1950s stargazing convention in a desert town. The powerhouse couple is joined on-screen by a stellar line-up of costars, including Scarlett Johanson, Jason Schwartzman, and Tilda Swindon. 


(Image credit: Getty)

The film has already enjoyed a positive reception, with one critic hailing Anderson's latest project as an 'exhilarating triumph.' Another review called the movie a 'tasty treat' that 'merits second, and possibly third, helpings.' 

Never one to focus on the drama, Wilson also paid tribute to her husband with an uplifting Instagram post on Wednesday. 

"What a joy to work with Wes Anderson and Tom along with an extraordinary cast," the Girls star wrote. "Hope you see it. Theaters June 16! Thank you @versace @donatella_versace and the fantastic team Teresa, Parmjeet, and Elenia (!) for making us look so good!!! @bulgari thank you for the jewels! Stylist: @maryammalakpour swipe to see the dress without the cape." 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.