Movie star Tom Hanks took a shot at US presidential candidate Donald Trump, branding him "a simplistic, self-involved gasbag of a candidate."
Hanks, in Rome to receive a lifetime achievement award at the eternal city's film festival, joked with the press ahead of the ceremony about similarities between Trump and Italy's ex-prime minister Silvio Berlusconi.
"Why the Trump?" he said, imitating one of the many Italian journalists who had asked him the same question, before quipping: "You're Italian. Why the Berlusconi?"
The star attended the world premiere of his new film "Inferno" last week in Florence.
"Every four years, the circus comes to town in the United States. Every four years, we decide who's going to be the leader," he added.
"It's always at some form of crossroads. Often there is a fever pitch of fear and anxiety. Sometimes it's warranted, and other times it's manufactured."
The two-time Academy Award winning actor said, "without a doubt the world is going through something quite profound in which the future is shaky, in which the future is mysterious, in which great parts of the world are dealing with problems that seem as though they have no solution."
However, "when America has faced those circumstances and times, we have never turned to a simplistic, self-involved gasbag of a candidate," he said.