CB presents the Full Story of an American Celebrity with the nickname “America’s Dad“. Our Tom Hanks Childhood Story plus Untold Biography Facts brings you a full account of notable events from his childhood time to date.
The analysis involves his early life/ family background, education/career buildup, early career life, the road to fame, rise to fame story, relationship life, personal life, family facts, lifestyle and other little-known facts about him.
Yes, everyone knows about his lead roles in popular movies. However, only a few consider Tom Hanks’ biography which is quite interesting. Now, without further ado, let’s begin.
Tom Hanks Childhood Story:
Starting off, Tom Hanks parents gave him the full name Thomas Jeffrey Hanks after his birth.
Tom Hanks was born on the 9th day of July 1956 to his mother, Janet Marylyn Frager, and father, Amos Mefford Hanks in the city of Concord, California.
Tom Hanks was brought up in a middle-class family background operated by his hard-working father who was an itinerant cook and a restaurant owner.
While his dad sees through the running of his restaurant, Tom’s mum served as a waitress. Together they kept their family going.
Tom Hanks Family Origin:
Perhaps many fans think Tom Hanks is American all through. But Did you know?… The celebrity actor has his family origin not only from the US, but also, England and Portugal.
Tom Hanks once revealed that his dad is of English ancestry while his mum is of Portuguese descent. By implication, it means Tom Hanks family has English/Portuguese family roots trace to their ancestry.
Tom Hanks Biography – Early Years:
Growing up in California, Tom at some point had a troubled childhood experience together with his siblings- Jim, Larry and Sandra. Tom Hanks in his early years (age 4) witnessed a dwindling relationship between his parents.
Things got so bad, a development that led to Tom Hanks parents separating from each other. Sandra Hanks (his older sister) and Larry Hanks (his older brother) went with their father. Tom Hanks’ youngest brother Jim remained with their mother in Red Bluff, California.
As a little boy, Tom witnessed his family moved a lot when he was a child. At the age of 10, the youngster had lived in 10 different houses in five different US cities.
The enthusiastic lad was pretty much comfortable with the family voyage.
Tom Hanks Education and Career Buildup:
Tom had his basic education at the now-closed John Swett Elementary School located in Martinez, California. He later moved to Bret Harte Junior High where he graduated in 1971.
After his juniors, Tom proceeded to Skyline High School in Oakland, California. It was at high school an enthusiastic Tom discovered his love for acting.
While at high school, Tom starred in school productions, taking drama classes with Rawley Farnsworth (his Skyline High School Drama Teacher).
He further joined a social group based at the First Covenant Church. During holidays Tom took up residence with a family from the church. He supported himself by working as a bellhop (hotel porter) at the Oakland Hilton Hotel.
While he helped patrons with their luggage while checking in or out of the hotel, young Tom still found time to practice drama while he was at Skyline high school.
Tom Hanks Bio – Early Career Life:
Following graduation from Skyline High School in 1974, Toms proceeded to Chabot College, in Hayward. There, he took classes that relate to his passion such as Oral Interpretation, Drama Performance, and studies in Shakespeare.
Performing well in his arts lucky Tom got himself transferred to California State University, Sacramento after two years at Chabot College.
Speaking about the high-level career dedication that moulded him to become the Legend he is today, Tom Hanks once said;
“In my youth, I spent a lot of time going to plays. I wouldn’t dare take dates with me. I’d just drive to a theatre, buy myself a ticket, sit in the seat and read the program, and then get into play. I spent a lot of time like that, seeing Brecht, Tennessee Williams, Ibsen, and all that.
While studying theatre arts at the university, Tom became an intern at the Great Lakes Theater Festival in Cleveland, Ohio.
His three-year internship covered all the major aspects of theatre which includes acting in various productions of Shakespeare’s plays. He spent his winters working backstage at a community theatre company in Sacramento.
Tom Hanks Biography – Road to Fame Story:
Did you know?… Tom Hanks’ journey to fame began with his decision of dropping out of college. After making the decision, he decided to move to New York City where he made his film and television debuts in 1979.
By 1980, Tom had already landed himself the lead role in ABC’s sitcom, Bosom Buddies. At this time, Tom Hanks parents couldn’t be any more proud of him.
The comedy series Bossom Buddies which he featured with Peter Scolari was the turning point in his career. The series ran from 1980 to 1982.
His decision of dropping out of college did not fail him as his acting career became very prosperous at that time.
By the mid-eighties, Tom enjoyed another lead role in major films one of which was Splash.
Tom Hanks Biography – Rise to Fame Story:
Before the early 1900s, Tom’s experience in the Hollywood industry saw him be becoming a producer, writer and director of movies.
Rather than crumble, legendary Tom went from strength to strength achieving his meteoric rise throughout the decade and onwards. At this time, most of Tom Hanks family members got into acting all thanks to him.
At the time of writing, Tom Hanks is ranked as the fifth-highest all-time box office star in the whole of North America. He has a total gross amounting to $4.9 billion at the North American box office.
In fact, the media once has it that he earns an average of $100.8 million per film. Why wouldn’t he?… Even Ranker has given Tom Hanks the Gold Status as he is currently voted #1 among “The Best Actors in Film History“
The rest, as they say, is history.
Tom Hanks Relationships Life:
Tom has been married twice. In this section, we bring you details about his past and present relationships. What you need to know about his failed marriage and one which has been very successful.
Hank’s Marriage With Samantha Lewes (1978-1987):
Tom got married to American actress Samantha Lewes in the year 1978. Samantha Lewes was born as Susan Jane Dillingham on 29th November 1952 in California, United States.
Just like Tom, Samantha also pursued a career in acting. During the late ’80s, their relationship began to dwindle. Things began to fall apart and it got so sour that both parties had to head for the divorce.
A few years later, Samantha’s life took a sad twist when she was diagnosed with bone cancer. She struggled with the deadly sickness for several years before giving up the ghost in 2002. Before her death, she had two children with Hanks.
Tom Hank’s Children with Samantha Lewes:
Colin Lewes Hanks:
He is the eldest son of actor Tom Hanks born on the 24th day of November 1977. Like his father, he is an American actor, producer, and director. Colin is known for starring in films such as Orange County, King Kong etc.
She is the first and only daughter of Tom Hanks and Samantha. Elizabeth Anne Hanks was born on the 17th day of May 1982, in Los Angeles, California.
Like her parents, Elizabeth is an actress known for Forrest Gump (1994), That Thing You Do! (1996) and Anchoraged (2015). Here is Tom Hanks pictured alongside his First and only Daugther, Elizabeth.
Tom Hank’s Marriage With Rita Wilson (1988 – ):
When making a list of the most successful celebrity marriages, your list can never get completed without mentioning Tom Hanks and his gorgeous wife actress Rita Wilson.
Loverboy Tom met his love, Rita Wilson, on the set of TV comedy Bosom Buddies in 1981. Their interaction while filming sparked undeniable chemistry. Four years after the movie, Tom and Rita were reunited again on the set.
This time, they were too attracted to each other to ignore their feelings. On the 30th of April 1988, Tom and Rita tied the knot.
Prior to marrying Rita, Tom converted to the Greek Orthodox Church, the religion of Wilson and her family.
Marrying within the religion was very important to Rita and her family. Loverboy Tom embraced every part of his new faith. When asked about his secret to a 30-year marriage, Tom replied;
“My secret to my happy marriage is just being married to the right woman. I got lucky with Rita Wilson. I’m the luckiest man alive”
The marriage between Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson is blessed with two children: They Include;
Chet Hanks: He is the first son and child born to Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson. Chet Hanks was born on the 4th day of August 1990 in the city of Los Angeles, California.
Like his parents and older half-siblings, Chet is also into acting. Did you know?… he acted in Indiana Jones and Fantastic Four among other top films.
Truman Theodore Hanks: He is the last son and child born to the family of Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson. Truman was born on a day after Christmas- the 26th day of December 1995.
As expected, Truman like the others also followed the footsteps of his parents and elder siblings. Although not very popular, he has played many minor roles in movies.
Truman has also featured in some advertisements and commercials. Meet Tom Hanks’ third son, Truman.
Tom Hanks Family Life:
In this section, we give you more insights into Tom Hanks’s family members starting with his parents.
More About Tom Hanks Dad: Amos Mefford Hanks was born on the 4th day of March 1924 in Glenn, California. The itinerant cook and a restaurant owner spent most part of his entire life doing his restaurant job.
This came after his short stint in the US Navy. Sadly, Amos Mefford Hanks died on the 31st of January, 1992. Little is know if Tom Hanks parents got back together before his dad passed on.
About Tom Hanks Mum: His mum, Janet Marylyn Hanks Frager was born on the 18th day of January 1932 at Alameda County, California. Janet who has her family origin from Portuguese outlived her husband.
She started her career as a waitress before plying through the trade of nursing. In 2016, Tom announced his mother’s death on his Instagram.
More About Tom Hanks Siblings:
Certainty, Tom didn’t grow up along alongside his parents. In this section, we provide you details about Tom Hank’s three siblings. They include;
- Larry Hanks: Born on the 26th day of January 1953, Larry is three years older than Tom his brother. The first son born to Tom Hanks parents.
Did you know?… Amos Mefford Hanks wasn’t into movies. He is an American entomologist and professor in the Department of Entomology, University of Illinois, USA.
Without a doubt, Larry’s looks speaks much about his profession. Meet Tom Hanks Eldest Brother, Larry.
2. Sandra Hanks: Being born in 1947 signifies she is 9 years older than her brother Tom. Sandra is a writer and blogger.
She enjoys a calm life in a big house at Seychelles with a perfect home that faces the Indian Ocean. Ever looking young and beautiful Sandra stays in touch with her siblings and kids via Skype.
3. Jim Hanks: Being born on the 15th day of June 1961 implies he is 5 years younger than Tom his brother. Jim followed the footsteps of his immediate elder brother. He is all in one- an American actor, voice actor, director, producer, cinematographer, and camera operator.
Jim has played numerous minor roles in films. He has also made guest appearances on television oftentimes becoming substitutes doing voice work for his older brother Tom Hanks.
About Tom Hanks Relatives:
Did you know?… Tom’s paternal grandparents are Ernest Hanks and Gladys Ball. His maternal grandfather and grandmother were Clarence Frager and Elexio Rose.
Lastly, Tom Hanks has two grandchildren who go by the names; Olivia Hanks and Charlotte Hanks. There are no records of Tom’s uncles and aunts. Tom Hanks’ cousins, nieces, and nephews are yet to be identified at the time of writing.
Tom Hanks Personal Life:
Getting to know Tom Hanks Personal Life would help you get a better picture of his personality of the camera set.
Starting off, he is someone who is very emotional and sensitive. Tom cares deeply about matters of the family and his home.
He is sympathetic in nature and loves to keep family members close to him. He is also able to empathize with other people’s pain and suffering, a strong attribute of his Cancer Zodiac Sign.
Did you know?… The film producer and director have interests and hobbies that revolve around watching football and spending plenty of quality time with his immediate family.
Tom Hanks Lifestyle Facts:
Starting off, he as an estimated net worth of $350 million As at the time of writing, making him one of the most bankable stars in the Hollywood industry. This is a pointer to his exotic lifestyle.
The breadwinner of the Hanks family makes enough monies which he uses to live an exotic lifestyle.
Speaking of his exotic lifestyle, Hanks has a collection of houses worth about $17.5 million dollars. His exotic mansions located in sunny Los Angeles cover an area of 7,620-square feet and 3,930 square feet respectively.
Another area of Tom Hanks’ exotic lifestyle is in the area of his car collections. Tom Hanks owns a Toyota RAV4 EV, the first production of AC Propulsion eBox electric car. He also owns a Toyota Prius, a Chevrolet Tahoe. Most recently at the time of writing, he just bought a Mercedes Benz S-class.
Tom Hanks Facts:
In this session, we bring you extra information on Tom Hanks Facts which is probably lesser-known to you.
He wanted to be an Astronaut: As a child, little Tom originally wanted to become an astronaut. He wasn’t successful because he didn’t have the math skills. As luck would have it, his dreams somehow got fulfilled.
Did you know?… NASA’s manned space program gifted him with an asteroid that was named after him.
The name of Tom Hanks’ asteroid is called “12818 Tom Hanks” discovered on the 13th of April 1996 by astronomer Joseph L. Montan. Nevertheless dropping out of school, Tom Hanks parents would certainly be proud of him.
Tom Hanks is related to Abraham Lincoln: Did you know?… Tom Hanks is a third cousin, four generations removed, of former US President Abraham Lincoln.
What does “four generations removed mean?… It means Tom Hanks great-great-great-great-great-great grandfather was Lincoln’s great-great-grandfather. In summary, Tom Hanks and Abraham Lincoln are family and practically brothers.
Religion: Before his birth, Tom Hanks family adopted the Christianity religion of the Catholic and Mormon faith. According to WomansDay, Hanks once described himself as being a “Bible-toting evangelical” during his teenage years.
As described earlier, he changed to a different branch of Christianity religion after getting married to Rita Wilson. He now adopts the Greek Orthodox faith.
Tattoos: We all know Tattoo culture is very popular in today’s Hollywood industry. Hollywood stars often use it to portray their religion or the people or things they love. Tom Hanks at the time of writing is tattoo-free.
Though, a few of his fans have his image tattooed on their bodies. We’ve seen that of Obama, Kanye, Cardi B and Freeman etc. The 1.83m height veteran belongs to the league of actors who don’t admire bodily beautification.
Smoking and Drinking: As at the time of writing, Tom Hanks doesn’t smoke cigarettes. However, he has been spotted drinking occasionally.
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