The life of Tom Hanks

He knew at a young age that he wanted to be an actor and has been nicknamed “America’s Dad.” Recently, he was diagnosed with COVID-19, and is now steadily recovering in Australia. This is the story of Tom Hanks.

“America’s dad”

He ran across the United States. He saved Private Ryan. He was fighting AIDS discrimination in Philadelphia. He lived in an airport terminal for a year. This is Thomas Hanks, more famously known as Tom Hanks.

Tom Hanks was born in 1956, in California

When he was just 5, his parents divorced. With his older brother and sister, he stayed with their father, while their younger brother moved in with their mother. Before age 10, he’d already moved 10 times.

At 23, he moved to New York

The following year, he landed a role in the show "Bosom Buddies." In 1977, he became a father for the first time. His son Colin was born of his union with actor Samantha Lewes. 5 years later, his daughter Elizabeth was born. Colin once said, “I don't look at my dad as a gigantic, humongous movie star that’s known across the world. I just look at him as a guy who makes really good decisions.”

In 1984, filmmaker Ron Haward gave him his first leading role in a movie

He became a man who fell in love with a mermaid in "Splash." At 32, his role in "Big" earned him his first Oscar nomination and made him a star. That same year, in 1988, he married his second wife, actor Rita Wilson. Together, they have two sons: Chester, born in 1990 and Truman, born in 1995. In 1994 and 1995, he won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his roles in “Philadelphia” and “Forrest Gump.” At 39, he lent his voice to Woody, a character in "Toy Story," for the first time. In 1996, a group of astronomers at the University of Arizona discovered a new asteroid and decided to name it "Asteroid 12818 Tomhanks" in tribute to the actor's performance in "Apollo 13."

How he became “America’s dad”

By the mid-1990s, his roles portraying regular men experiencing extraordinary situations gave him immense popularity, and the press nicknamed him "America's Dad." At 40, to prepare for the movie "Saving Private Ryan," he convinced his partners to spend six days living in the same conditions as American soldiers during World War II. Fascinated by that war, he produced the miniseries "Band of Brothers" with Steven Spielberg in 2001.

In 2002, 2004, and 2005, he was voted America's Favorite Movie Star

In 2008, he participated in a fundraising campaign against Prop. 8, a California-wide ballot proposition which defines marriage exclusively as the union of a man and a woman. At 57, he revealed he had diabetes. In 2014, his wife Rita Wilson was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a double mastectomy.

At 60, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America's highest civilian honor, by Barack Obama

In the summer of 2019, he donated $1,400 to Joe Biden's Democratic primary campaign. At 63, he received the Cecil B. DeMille Award, an honorary Golden Globe Award. On March 12, 2020, while preparing for a film shoot in Australia, Tom Hanks announced that he and his wife had been diagnosed with Covid-19. He and his wife are currently on their way to recovery.