Tom Hanks has had a busy year, shooting films and doing press for two huge movie releases. Though his movies “Captain Phillips” and “Saving Mr. Banks” couldn’t be more different, they do have one thing in common. Tom was required to sport facial hair for both.

“I had three roles this year and they all had facial hair,” the Oscar-winner said at the AFI Fest premiere of “Saving Mr. Banks” on Nov. 7. “My wife [Rita Wilson] hated it, she hates it every time I have to do it.”

And the actor says there’s a telltale sign when his wife is ready to bring out the razor. “When she says, 'so, when are you done with this job?' What your wife really means is, ‘when are you shaving that off?’

But preparing for the role proved to be a greater challenge for Tom then growing the facial hair. “It's just grunt work, its just hard, hard grunt work,” he said of the mountain of research he did to prepare.

“I talked to his daughter, I talked to all sorts of people who actually worked with the man, people would find me on the lot, animators and long term employees,” he said. “They would say, 'Hey, I got to tell you this one story about Walt,' as well as every piece of video and every piece of audio tape I could listen to.

The actor also took time out on the carpet to share what he wants for Christmas (running pants) and what he’ll get for wife Rita. “I will go the toaster oven route, but a really cool toaster oven, one that you can just set and it's automatic,” he said. “Cause she is handy in the kitchen. Boy, that wife of mine.”