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WWII bicycle messenger subject of new Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan movie

Ithaca is remake of 1943 Mickey Rooney vehicle The Human Comedy

Hollywood stars Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan are collaborating on a new movie due for release next year – and it’s one that has a cycling theme.

Ithaca is a remake of the 1943 Mickey Rooney vehicle, The Human Comedy.

Set in World War II, it’s about a 14-year-old boy with ambitions to be the best bicycle telegraph messenger – at a time when that role involved delivering bad news to families with members serving in the forces.

The principal character, played by Alex Neustaedter, is 14-year-old Homer Macauley – his first name a clue that in part, the plot is based on Homer’s Odyssey.

The Greek epic has also provided inspiration for movies such as New York City gang move The Warriors, as well as the Coen brothers’ film, Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?

Ryan plays Homer’s mother in the movie, and also directs it, while Hanks is executive producer, and said: “It’s sometimes shockingly unsentimental and yet, by some little miracle, never cynical. I am delighted to no end to bring a tale of such vibrancy and heart to the screen.”

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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