The National Enquirer and Star magazine have retracted a pair of October stories that claimed Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson are divorcing.
The move comes in the wake of Hanks and Wilson hiring power lawyer Marty Singer to stop what they call "lies we would not put up with any longer." Singer sent letters to American Media Inc., the parent company of the two publications, and both outlets promptly changed their respective stories in their online editions. National Enquirer and Star also will run corrections in their upcoming print editions.
The National Enquirer issued an apology to the couple that reads: "In the October 10, 2016 issue of The National Enquirer, we did not intend to report that Tom Hanks was having any kind of an inappropriate relationship with Meg Ryan, or that he and Rita Wilson were divorcing. We apologize for and regret any implication to the contrary."
Similarly, Star also offered up a mea culpa, saying: "In the October 3, 2016 issue of Star magazine, we did not intend to report that Tom Hanks was having any kind of an inappropriate relationship with Felicity Jones, or that he and Rita Wilson were divorcing. We apologize for and regret any implication to the contrary."
Hanks has starred opposite both Ryan and Jones, most recently with the latter in Inferno. The original Star cover story ran with the headline "Rita & Tom The Fight to End All Fights!" The National Enquirer story ran inside the publication with a subheadline that read: "$400 million marriage crumbling over Hanks' love for [Meg] Ryan."
In a joint statement to The Hollywood Reporter, Hanks and Wilson said: "No true news organization could report that our marriage is on the brink of breaking up, but American Media Inc., owner of Star and The National Enquirer, often run fabricated stories to sell their tabloids. In the past, we laughed off their cover stories of our soon-to-be acrimonious divorce because those stories were so far from true, they were laughable. But our marriage is the foundation of our family, is sacred to us, and we couldn't allow such nonsense as we are about to celebrate our 29th wedding anniversary next April. For Star and National Enquirer to profit by dishonoring what is so precious to us with such hoods were, we decided, lies we would not put up with any longer."
A source says the couple was prepared to have Singer take legal action as far as necessary to get a retraction - an unusual move given the abundance of dubious stories in gossip magazines. But they wanted to set an example that it should not be tolerated as the status quo.