Tom Hanks stars in Somali pirate drama 'Captain Phillips'

Tom Hanks is kidnapped by Somali pirates in his latest film.

‘Captain Phillips’ is based on the real-life ordeal of Captain Richard Phillips who was held hostage in a lifeboat after his cargo ship was stormed in 2009. The pirates got more than they bargained for when US Navy snipers rescued the captain after a five-day standoff in the Indian Ocean.

‘Captain Phillips’ opened the New York Film Festival on September 27.

“This is really about a robbery gone awry at sea and the consequences of those four guys’ decision to climb up on board and not finding what they thought they were going to find put Richard Phillips in a very, very tight position,” said Hanks.

The actor believes that it is an advantage that audiences know the story’s ending “because that means we were able to concentrate on the small, little details, the human behaviour, the moments that are almost inexplicable but really did happen”.

The two-time Oscar winner’s latest outing, however, rightly earns its label as a self-proclaimed “pulse-pounding thriller”.

Hanks met the real captain to get to know the man at the centre of the story.

“He just asked me about how the routine was, how the lifestyle was,” said Richard Phillips. “He really wasn’t interested in the events itself. He was just interested in how our life was, how a life on a ship was, the family life, coming and going, and that’s what he really was interested in. I think he was just trying to get a feel for me.”

Director Paul Greengrass is no stranger to hijack dramas. He made the acclaimed ‘United 93,” about the 9/11 hijacking that was thwarted by passengers.

‘Captain Phillips’ can be see across the US, UK, Ireland and Canada later this month.