Instagram | @tomhanks

10+ Facts About Tom Hanks Fans Didn't Know

Tom Hanks is about as fine a human being as there is, that is for sure. Widely regarded as "The Nicest Guy in Hollywood," Tom's reputation for kindness precedes him.

But even for someone as well-known as Hanks, there is a lot that gets left unsaid.

Here are 10+ facts about the legendary Tom Hanks that fans didn't know.

Just because we love him, that does not mean that we know everything about him!

In fact, there are a ton of things that fans don't know!

Luckily, this list is here to help! Let's get into these fun facts about Tom Hanks!

Tom Hanks is one of the most beloved people in all of Hollywood. Maybe even in the world!

There is nothing the man can't do, no role that he can't play.

We love watching his movies, and we love listening to his interviews, analyzing his pieces of wisdom that he gives to his fans.

1. Tom believed in the success of *Forrest Gump* so much that he refused to take any up-front money.

Tom instead opted for a deal that gave him a certain percentage on the overall gross.

Estimates put the payday at anywhere from between $40-60 million.

2. He won the American Film Institute's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2002, making him the youngest person ever to receive the honor.

Instagram | @tomhanks

Tom was only 45 years old at the time!

His career wasn't even at the middle ground back then!

3. Tom is totally obsessed with typewriters and owns over 250 of them.

“What thrills me about typewriters, is that they are meant to do one thing and one thing only and with the tiniest amount of effort, maintenance, it will last a thousand years."

He even released a documentary called *California Typewriter*.

YouTube | Vanity Fair

The film has a number of celebrity guests including John Mayer, among others, who share and relate their stories to the camera of why they choose to type.

4. Tom is the fourth highest-grossing actor in the history of Hollywood.

Tom's total box office gross is worth an incredible $4.605 billion.

That's more boxes of chocolate than I can count!

5. He once won back-to-back Best Actor awards at the Oscars.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Tom won for Philadelphia and Forrest Gump, two films that are considered to be among his very finest.

If you ask me, Forrest Gump is one of the greatest films to have ever been made.

6. Tom always somehow manages to play the role of a captain.

Sony Pictures

It's become a bit of a pattern over the past few decades. Tom was a captain in Saving Private Ryan, Sully, Apollo 13, and of course, who could forget, Captain Phillips!

It's probably because he's such a natural leader.

7. He converted to the Greek Orthodox faith when he married his wife, Rita Wilson.

Instagram | @ritawilson

Wilson apparently has Bulgarian roots and it was important that her husband share in her faith.

The things we do for love.

8. Tom had to gain and then lose over 50 pounds for his role in *Cast Away*!

He initially had to gain weight in order to give himself the appearance of an average, middle-aged man.

Tom then lost a whopping 54 pounds to film the island sequences - in only three months!

9. Tom holds the record for being the 4th most-recurring host in the history of *Saturday Night Live*.

YouTube | Entertainment Tonight

In his legendary career, Tom has hosted SNL on 10 separate occasions. That's not even counting guest appearances.

He's an elite member of what's known as The 5-Timers Club.

11. "Houston, we have a problem."

In the script for Apollo 13, the line was originally written as "OK Houston, we've had a problem here."

Hanks changed the tense to emphasize the danger and the rest is history.

10. He was one of the first celebrities to speak about being diagnosed with COVID-19.

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I think the entire world said a prayer in their own way for Tom and Rita.

Thank goodness that both have recovered and seem to be doing quite well.

12. Tom is a distant relative of former United States President Abraham Lincoln.

Instagram | @tomhanks

The keyword here is "distant." Tom is the third cousin, four generations removed from "Honest Abe."

I wonder if he'll ever get the chance to play him in a biopic?

13. He sits on the Board of Governors of the National Space Society

Instagram | @tomhanks

This is the same board that was founded by rocket technology mogul Werner von Braun, the controversial pioneer and father of rocket science.

Werner worked with the Nazis during WWII and made a deal to aid the Americans in the Space Race in exchange for immunity for his war crimes.

Tom even has an actual asteroid named after him.

The technical name is "Asteroid 12818" but how boring is that?!

If it were up to me, I'd probably call it the "Bubba Gumpsteroid" or, wait, I know! How about "The Asteroid to Perdition"?

14. He was given the Presidential Medal of Freedom:

Back in 2014, Barack Obama had nothing but nice things to say about Tom Hanks.

The speech he gave his friend is super emotional and will probably bring a tear to your eye.

15. He likes showing up to press a little bit early.

YouTube | ScreenSlam

As though we couldn't love him any more than we already did!

He has admitted that he knows the value of showing up early to these functions and that it is a sign of respect.

16. Like many older actors, he prefers movie theaters to streaming services.

In his opinion, sound, image, and the entire experience in general is better when one is in a theater versus when one has to watch a movie at home.

He isn't wrong, imo.

17. He figured out from an early age how to command a room, and it made him become a better actor.

"It truly is a self-defence mechanism when I am uncomfortable or unsure of myself. Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve been aware [that I have an ability], in a way my brothers and sister did not have."

"To walk into a room and make everyone believe I was incredibly comfortable with being there."

YouTube | CBS News

Well, he could have fooled us. Tom Hanks seems like he could be comfortable in any given situation.

18. When asked by *The Guardian* if he had any wisdom to share with people struggling during the strange year that is 2020, he gave a very Tom Hanks answer:

Instagram | @tomhanks

"It’s funny how this stuff blends into the art you hope to create. When we put together Castaway [sic], we knew there was a card missing from that deck of 52, and the consternation over what was missing from that movie drove us insane. "It was that elusive kind of beat, and it was what we’re talking about right now: how do you go on? In Greyhound, Krause has a little card that says: ‘Yesterday, today and forever.'"

"That’s all we have as human beings and that’s all we have in the midst of the 19 different crises that we’re facing right now, between Covid-19, worldwide economic disaster, what happened to George Floyd – the great reckoning that we’re all going through."

Instagram | @tomhanks

"What do we have that we can have faith in? Well, we can have an understanding of yesterday, we can have a plan for today and we can have hope for forever, and that’s it. That’s my wisdom. It ain’t much, Hadley, but is there anything else?"

19. During the filming of *Forrest Gump*, Tom Hanks had quite a bit of control over the character.

He and the director got along so well that when they would pause a scene, the director would ask for Hanks' opinion on what he thought he character would do next or how he would act.

20. He thought *Cast Away* was a huge risk.

Luckily, the movie turned out in his favor, but he went into it feeling like it was a big risk to make.

It was a lot different than other films coming out at the time and so he had no idea that it would do so well.

Do you know any more facts about Tom Hanks that you would like to share?

Or were you pleasantly surprised by all the facts in this article?

Either way, let us know down below in the comments section! We would love to hear from you!