There’s no denying it, Tom Hanks is one of the most charismatic actors known to man. Not only is he an Oscar-winner with a career spanning four decades, but he’s also someone you’d love to hang out with for the afternoon. This December sees Hanks take on the role of pilot Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger in Sully: Miracle on the Hudson, who rose to fame after safely landing an airplane on the Hudson River in 2009.
We know him as an actor, director and producer, but there’s a lot more to Tom Hanks than his big screen presence. Here are a few things you might not know about the film world’s favourite Renaissance man.
It’s called 12818 Tomhanks and it was discovered in 1996 by the Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona. It actually happened to cross paths in September 2011 with asteroid 8353 Megryan, named after Hanks’ You’ve Got Mail co-star.
- He’s a Distant Relative of Abraham Lincoln
Hanks is the third cousin, four generations removed, from America’s 16th president. In fact John Hanks – Tom Hanks’ great grandfather times six – was also Abraham Lincoln’s great-great grandfather.
- He Has a Killer Typewriter Collection
Hanks is cited as having collected more than 80 typewriters from all over the world, while in 2014 it was announced that he was planning a short story collection based on them.
- He Also Has His Own App
In 2015, Hanks created Hanx Writer, his very own app based on his love of typewriters. The app essentially recreates the experience of using a typewriter with all the bells and whistles, and true to form, there isn’t a ‘delete’ key in sight.
- Hanks Doesn’t Watch His Own Movies
When he comes across them on television, Hanks claims he flips right past them, citing that he was in them, has seen them before and so doesn’t need to watch them again. We have to admit to doing the exact opposite…
- He and Bruce Springsteen are Best Friends
The two have been good pals since childhood. Hanks also counts actress Julia Roberts and director Stephen Spielberg as good friends.
- As a Child, Hanks Wanted to be an Astronaut
He’s currently a member of the National Space Society and has been involved in producing space-themed documentaries and IMAX films.
- He’s the Fourth Highest All-Time Box Office Star
With more than $4.264 billion total box office gross and an average of $101.5 million per film, Hanks is fourth only to Harrison Ford, Samuel L. Jackson and Morgan Freeman.
- Hanks Dropped Out of College
He originally attended Chabot College in Hayward, California before transferring to California State University Sacramento, where he studied acting. After interning at the Great Lakes Theater Festival in Cleveland, Hanks dropped out of college to pursue his acting career full-time.
- He’s One of Two Actors to Have Achieved Back-to-Back Oscars
In 1993 he won the Academy Award in the category of Best Actor. Immediately after in 1994, he achieved the same accolade again. The only other actor to have achieved this is Spencer Tracy, who won the award in 1938 and 1939.