Tom Hanks on Presidential Medal of Freedom honour

Hollywood star Tom Hanks talks about being selected by President Obama as a recipient of the 2016 Medal of Freedom.

LONDON (REUTERS) - Hollywood star Tom Hanks said he was "glad" and "fortunate" to be selected as a recipient of the 2016 Presidential Medal of Freedom - the highest civilian honour in the United States. 

"Look, I'm just a dumb kid from Oakland, California, I don't know how any of this happened but I'm glad, I'm very fortunate that I've been able to work enough that it rates such a nod from such a man as the President of the United States," Hanks told Reuters in London on Thursday (Nov 17), a day after the White House made the announcement.

President Barack Obama will present awardees, including rocker Bruce Springsteen, Motown soul singer Diana Ross, former basketball champion Michael Jordan and actor Robert De Niro, with their medals at a White House ceremony on Nov 22.

When asked how it felt to be among Obama's last recipients, Hanks replied: "Well bittersweet cause, you know, we have term limits, if he was running again I would've voted for another four years." 

The Oscar-winning actor was in London for a special screening of Sully: Miracle on the Hudson.

The drama, directed by Clint Eastwood, is inspired by the real-life US Airways pilot who landed a damaged plane on the Hudson River in the middle of winter, saving all 155 people on-board. 

Sully, which has already opened in the US and several other territories, will hit UK cinemas on Dec 2.