The 25 Greatest Actors Of The '90s

By EW Staff
August 07, 1998 at 04:00 AM EDT

“Tom would’ve made a terrific soldier. He’s a common man with an uncommon talent.” — RETIRED CAPTAIN DALE DYE, U.S. MARINE CORPS (MILITARY ADVISER ON SAVING PRIVATE RYAN)

It’s too easy to call him a “regular Joe.” Playing an astronaut in Apollo 13, he plunged so deep into research that he practically knew how to fly a space capsule. Playing a stoic soldier in Saving Private Ryan, Hanks, 42, sponged up as much military history as General Patton (and might score a third Oscar for the effort). Watch his eyes on screen and you’ll see the darting, piercing vitality of a mind in overdrive. And there’s nothing regular about that.

DON’T MISS: Sleepless in Seattle (1993), Philadelphia (1993), Forrest Gump (1994)

NEXT: You’ve Got Mail, a remake of the 1940 Jimmy Stewart comedy The Shop Around the Corner (Dec. 18)