Tom Hanks in 'hideously offensive' race row over 'blacked-up' man video

   Mar 24, 4:01 pm

London, Mar 24 (ANI): Tom Hanks, who has been caught in a race row storm after footage emerged of him sharing a stage with a 'blacked-up' man, has apologised for the "hideously offensive" incident that occurred when he hosted a charity auction at his children's school.

A fellow parent at the event took to the stage with his face blackened, wearing an afro wig and animal print costume while carrying a stuffed gorilla.

During the two-minute video clip, which also features 'Eagles' singer Glen Fey, the Oscar winner is seen using the blacked-up man to mock US political commentator Bill O'Reilly, who has previously been accused of racial insensitivity.

"A celebrity in our midst who would have thought Bill O'Reilly would join us?" the Mirror quoted Hanks as saying.

The blacked-up man has since been identified as investment banker James Montgomery, a parent at the 18,000-pound-a-year primary school.

The footage, which was recorded in 2004, has been slammed by race equality campaigners, who have also urged Barack Obama to disassociate himself from the actor, who narrated a campaign video for the President's re-election campaign.

Niger Innis, from the Congress of Racial Equality reportedly branded the video "gross" and "coarse" and called on Obama to "end any association or affiliation with Mr Hanks".

The 55-year-old actor was forced to issue an apology, telling Hollywood news website The Wrap.

"I was blindsided when one of the parents got up on the stage in a costume that was hideously offensive then and is hideously offensive now.

"What is usually a night of food and drink for a good cause was, regrettably, marred by an appalling few moments," he said.

The controversial clip was leaked to US website The Daily Caller by a woman who filmed the event, who branded Hanks a "hypocrite". (ANI)

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