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31 Amazing Facts About The Beloved Actor Tom Hanks We Bet You Didn’t Know


Since his very first appearance in the “Bosom Buddies” as Kip Wilson, Tom Hanks has been one of the Hollywood’s most beloved actors. With his impressive talent and undeniable charm, he is known to take cinema-goers into the depths of his characters and beyond. Here are some facts about the Hollywood icon that would make any Hanks-lover go crazy.

  1. Hanks as an American actor and filmmaker, is the third most-represented actor behind Sidney Poitier and Gary Cooper, on the American Film Institute’s 100 Most Inspiring Movies of All Time, with four of his films making the list.
  2. He once shared the record as the actor to star in the most consecutive $100 million-grossing movies with seven and the Entertainment Weekly chose him as the only actor worthy of $20 million.
  3. Hanks is the only actor in history, apart from Spencer to earn back-to-back Best Actor Oscar, when he won for the first time in 1993, for Philadelphia and then in 1994 for Forrest Gump.
  4. He was born Thomas Jeffrey Hanks, on July 9, 1956, in Concord, California, as third of four children to itinerant cook, Amos Mefford Hanks and a hospital worker Janet Marylyn. His siblings are Sandra, Larry, and Jim.
  5. At the age of five in 1962, his parents got separated and he moved in with his father. Due to unpredictability of his home life, he had lived in 10 different houses, until the age of ten, before his father finally stabilized living arrangement when he married Frances Wong.
  6. He attended Bret Harte Junior High School at Oakland and later moved to Skyline High School. After high school graduation in 1974, he enrolled at Chabot Community College for next two years before enrolling at California State University, Sacramento.
  7. Hanks destiny with acting started with his school drama program, beginning with ‘Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, and appeared in number of plays, thanks to Rawley Farnsworth’s encouragement, the school drama teacher.
  8. In 2010, the ‘Time,’ magazine had called him as one of ‘Top Ten College Dropouts.’ He left college to intern full time at the Great Lakes Theatre Festival in Cleveland, Ohio, learning various aspect of theatre from lighting to set design and stage management.
  9. His first big role in theatre was Grumio, in ‘The Taming of the Shrew,’ and had won a ‘Cleveland Critics Circle Award,’ in 1978, for his role as Proteus in ‘The Two Gentlemen of Verona.’
  10. On November 24, 1977, he became a father for the first time at the age of 21, when his then girlfriend, Samantha Lewes, gave birth to their son Colin Hanks and on February 1, 2011, he became a grandfather for the first time, at the age of 54, when his son Colin and Samantha Bryant welcomed their first daughter, Olivia Jane.
  11. He married for the second time in 1988, when he met Rita Wilson, on the sets of TV comedy Bosom Buddies and they have two sons, Chester Marlon ‘Chet’ Hanks, and Truman Theodore.
  12. In 1979,he moved to New York with a dream of performing at Broadways theatre, and made his film debut in a low budget horror film ‘He Knows You’re Alone,’ in 1980. Later he went on to star in TV series ‘Bosom Buddies,’ ‘Taxi,’ ‘Happy Days,’ ‘Maze and Monsters,’ and ‘Family Ties,’ in early 1980s.
  13. His guest role as Dr. Dwayne Twitchell, in the 1982 TV series ‘Happy Days,’ earned him a lead role in the fantasy romantic comedy film ‘Splash,’ and in the sex comedy film ‘Bachelor Party,’ in 1984, both of which went on to become a surprise box office hits.
  14. Hanks learned through ‘Ancestry.com,’ tracing back on his mother’s side, that he is the third cousin, four generations removed, of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States. Their common ancestors were John Hanks and his wife, Catherine, who were great-great-grandparents of Lincoln.
  15. Travelling around the world, he took fancy for old and vintage typewriters and has collection of over 80 of them. In 2017, he published a book, a collection of shorts stories, titled ‘Uncommon Type,’ with typewriter as central theme in each of them.
  16. Hanks was bestowed with Distinguished Public Service Award on Veteran’s Day in 1999, for his work on ‘Saving Private Ryan,’ and in 2006, he was inducted as honorary member of United States Army Rangers Hall of Fame,’ for the same.
  17. As a teenager he had sold peanuts and popcorn at the Oakland Coliseum and also worked as a hotel bellman, carrying the bags of celebrities including the likes of Cher, Sidney Poitier, Slappy White and Bill Withers.
  18. In 1988, he starred in the movie ‘Big,’ as a 13-year old boy trapped in a 35-year old man’s body for which he spent lot of time in observing and learning to mimic the mannerism of his 13-year old co-star. He earned critical acclaim and his first Academy Award nomination for Best Actor for this film.
  19. He won his first Oscar for his portrayal of Andrew Beckett, an AIDS patient in the 1993 film ‘Philadelphia.’ Hanks had to lose almost thirty pounds to appear appropriately gaunt for his courtroom scenes.
  20. Hanks won his second Academy Award for Best Actor for the 1994 film ‘Forrest Gump,’ for which he was not paid, instead he took percentage points which ultimately netted him in the region of $40 million.
  21. He went on to receive two other Best Actor Oscar nomination, for the war drama film of 1998, ‘Saving Private Ryan,’ and for his portrayal of a marooned FedEx system analyst in ‘Cast Away,’ In 2000.
  22. With the 1996, comedy drama film ‘That Thing You Do,’ Hanks made his feature film debut as writer-director and went on to direct his second film, ‘Larry Crowne,’ in 2011. The ‘That Thing You Do,’ is the only film to date to feature his wife, Rita Wilson, son, Colin Hanks, and daughter, Elizabeth Hanks.
  23. On November 22, 2016, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award by then President Barrack Obama. He was also honored with ‘Hollywood Walk of Fame,’ at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on June 1, 1992.
  24. Hanks has portrayed real-live people, seven times in his film career, starting with Jim Lovell in Apollo 13, in 1995, Charlie Wilson in Charlie Wilson’s War in 2007, Captain Richard Phillips in Captain Phillips in 2013, Walt Disney in Saving Mr. Banks in 2013, James B. Donovan in Bridge of Spies in 2015, Captain ‘Chesley Sullenberger’ in Sully in 2016, and Ben Bradlee in The Post in 2017.
  25. On May 20, 2016, Hanks received the ‘Legion of Honor Medal,’ the highest award bestowed by the French government, for his presentation of World War II and for support of World War II veterans. He was also made an honorary Greek citizen on the special order of the Greece’s President Prokopis Pavlopoulos, in 2019.
  26. Apart from supporting same-sex marriage he also advocates use of alternate fuels for environmental causes. Hanks has invested in electric vehicles and owns a Toyota RAV4 EV, apart from first production AC Propulsion eBox.
  27. He once donated to the White House an espresso machine, after learning that the press corps there did not possess one and subsequently replaced it in 2010 and also in 2017.
  28. Perceived as ‘All American Dad,’ on screen, Hanks had crowd of 300 fans waiting for a glimpse of him after every performance of Nora Ephron’s Luckey Guy on Broadway. This is the highest number of expectant fans post-show of any Broadway.
  29. He is endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden, for the 2020 Presidential election and has donated $1,400. He has donated to many a Democratic politician, including Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.
  30. Hanks has been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, and practices transcendental meditation apart from participating in charity dinner for veterans the victims of post-traumatic stress disorders.
  31. Tom Hanks Net Worth: $350 Million
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