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Tom Hanks' Decades-Long Feud With This Star Is "Painful," Friend Says

And it all began with a movie about a crime-solving dog.

If you know about their reputation for being two of the nicest people in Hollywood, then you'd be surprised that Tom Hanks or Henry Winkler would have a feud with anyone, let alone each other. But it's true! Reportedly, the tension between the two actors dates all the way back in 1989 when they were working on the movie Turner & Hooch together. That's right—this feud began with a movie about a crime-solving dog.

These days, matters seem to be resolved between Hanks and Winkler, but one of their mutual friends, director Ron Howard, has confirmed that things weren't always so friendly. Plus, Winkler made the occasional comment about his relationship with Hanks over the years—sometimes, just to jokingly fuel the fire.

Read on to find out more about this unlikely Hollywood clash.

RELATED: William Shatner & This Star Trek Co-Star Have Been Feuding For 50 Years.

Winkler was fired from Turner & Hooch.

Tom Hanks at a performance of "Twelfth Night" in 1990
Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Winkler was hired to direct the 1989 movie Turner & Hooch, which stars Hanks as a detective who solves a crime with the help of a dog. It has long been thought that Winkler was replaced because he and Hanks didn't get along.

During a 2019 appearance on Watch What Happens Live, Winkler explained, "I was directing that movie for 13 days, and then I was called into [producer] Jeff Katzenberg's office, and he said, 'Do you have everything with you? Go home.'"

Winkler has joked about the feud over the years.

Henry Winkler on "Watch What Happens Live" in 2019
Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen / YouTube

In 1993, Winkler was interviewed by People and said, "Let's just say I got along better with Hooch [the dog] than I did with Turner [Hanks]."

More recently, during his Watch What Happens Live appearance, the Barry star said, "I got along great, great with that dog. Love that dog." When he was asked if he ever watched the film, he joked, "I don't remember the title of that movie."

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Howard called clash between his friends "disappointing."

Ron Howard and Tom Hanks at a photocall for "Inferno" in 2016
Mike Marsland/Mike Marsland/WireImage via Getty Images

Howard knows both stars very well. He worked with Winkler on Happy Days for many years, of course. And he's directed Hanks in five movies: Splash, Apollo 13, and the three Da Vinci Code films.

"It was disappointing," Howard told The Guardian in 2020 of Hanks and Winkler not getting along on Turner & Hooch. "I'm friends with them both and both men felt compelled to come to talk to me about it. It was just one of those unfortunate things where they really had a working style that did not fit. I know it was painful for both of them and I was able to lend an ear, if not offer any solutions."

Howard was also asked if things remained strained between them to this day. "Oh no, they've both been invited to my birthday parties. It's been a lot of years, two men with a lot of water under the bridge," he explained.

Winkler has confirmed that there's no bad blood between them now.

Henry Winkler at the American Spirit Awards in 2019
Eugene Powers / Shutterstock

Hanks has never spoken publicly about his relationship with Winkler, but in 2020, Winkler told TMZ in no uncertain terms, "I don't have a feud with Tom Hanks," and that there was nothing left there to gossip about. The actor also recalled that he had just seen Hanks at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and "it was beautiful," and said that they'd taken a picture together at a Bruno Mars concert.

Addressing his comments on Watch What Happens Live, Winkler shrugged them off as a joke. "That was just fun," he said.

RELATED: Julia Roberts Called This Co-Star "Completely Disgusting."

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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