Tom Hanks’s Broadway debut on Tuesday night was a “bittersweet moment” after the death of the play’s author and his longtime friend, Nora Ephron. Hanks struggled to hold back tears as he got a standing ovation after the show’s opening night, saying, “That was a tough moment. We were going to do this, and Nora and [show director] George C. Wolfe were going to walk out on stage. I miss her. What more can I say?” Hanks, who starred in two of Ephron’s films, Sleepless in Seattle and You’ve Got Mail, said Ephron was “just a magnificent hang,” and she always told him, “Never turn down a front-row seat for human folly.” Hanks’s wife, Rita Wilson, said she believed Ephron would be “happy to know this is actually happening.” Ephron died in June at the age of 71.
Death of friend Nora Ephron loomed over play’s opening night.