Tom Hanks
Jaguar PS / Shutterstock.com
  • Faith: Christian
  • Career: Actor
  • Birthday:  July 09, 1956

Tom Hanks is a filmmaker and actor. Known for his dramatic and comedic roles, Hanks is one of the most popular and recognizable film stars worldwide and is regarded as an American cultural icon. His films have grossed over $4.9 billion in North America and more than $9.96 billion worldwide, making him the fourth-highest-grossing actor in North America. He’s received numerous honors, including the AFI Life Achievement Award in 2002, the Kennedy Center Honor in 2014, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the French Legion of Honor both in 2016, as well as the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award in 2020.

Hanks made his breakthrough with leading roles in a series of comedy films that received positive media attention, like “The Money Pit,” “Splash,” “Big,” and “A League of Their Own.” He won two consecutive Academy Awards for Best Actor for starring as a gay lawyer who has AIDS in “Philadelphia” and the title character in “Forrest Gump.” The actor collaborated with film director Steven Spielberg on five films: “Saving Private Ryan,” “The Terminal,” “Catch Me If You Can,” “Bridge of Spies,” and “The Post,” as well as the miniseries “Band of Brothers.” Hanks has also frequently collaborated with film directors Robert Zemeckis, Ron Howard, and Nora Ephron.

Hanks’ other movies include “You’ve Got Mail,” “Sleeping in Seattle,” “Apollo 13,” “The Green Mile,” “Cast Away,” Road to Perdition,” “Cloud Atlas,” “Captain Phillips,” and “Elvis.” He’s also appeared as the title character in the “Robert Langdon” film series and voiced Sheriff Woody in the “Toy Story” film series. Hanks directed the comedy “That Thing You Do!” followed by the romantic comedy “Larry Crowne,” both of which he acted in. In 1998, Hanks started his production company Playtone, which has an exclusive television development deal with HBO. For his work on television, Hanks has won seven Primetime Emmys for his work as a producer of various limited series and television movies.

Hanks was born in California in 1956. His parents divorced in 1960, and the three oldest children, Sandra, Larry, and Tom, went with their father, while the youngest, Jim, stayed with their mother in California. In his childhood, Hanks’ family moved often. By the time he was 10, he had lived in 10 different homes.

What religion is Tom Hanks?

Hanks’ family religious history was Mormon and Catholic, but one journalist characterized Hanks’ teenage self as being a “Bible-toting evangelical” for years. Hanks said, “I must say that when I go to church -- and I do go to church -- I ponder the mystery. I meditate on the, ‘why?’ of ‘Why people are as they are,’ and ‘Why bad things happen to good people,’ and ‘Why good things happen to bad people.’... The mystery is what I think is, almost, the grand unifying theory of all mankind.”

In 1981, Hanks met actress Rita Wilson on the set of “Bosom Buddies.” The two were reunited in 1985 on the set of “Volunteers.” Wilson is a member of the Greek Orthodox Church, and before marrying her, Hanks converted to her faith. The couple married in 1988 and have two sons.

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