We don’t just love Tom Hanks, but we respect him. And this is really rare because not every day does one find an individual who is both respected and admired fondly, not in the least in the dizzying world of Hollywood where destinies are made and destroyed with each passing movie and where you could be the best you want to be and yet, can end up being no more than a ‘one-hit wonder!’
But Tom Hanks- born July 9, 1956, Concord, California- is different. You can understand the depth of his character because he’s both respected by his co-stars and saluted by the younger generation; actors who burst on the scene much later in life than Hanks.
There’s an innate niceness about the man that endears him to millions of fans around the world who consume his cinema in a bid to seek some meaning of life, in a bid to draw some useful life lessons. But nothing could convey Tom Hanks’ greatness other than suggesting the fact that the more he has gone on to achieve in his remarkable career, the more utterly simple and humane has he become.
When you see a Tom Hanks movie, you set yourself to witness a poignant, life-altering adventure. There are actors that make movies purely to entertain. Then there are those who make movies to purely rake in the big money. But there are only a few like Thomas Jeffrey Hanks who inspire whilst they entertain. And there are timeless examples of this fact. You can see The Green Mile, Castaway, Forrest Gump, Philadelphia.
But nothing could possibly convey Hanks’ greatness other than saying that today when he’s more than just a bankable star, a box-office sell-out, an icon of sorts, he still hasn’t forgotten the individuals who played a key role in his life when there was no one out there for him.
Recently, when the famous “Big” actor interacted with the media, he conveyed heartwarming regards and conveyed an ode to some friends who sort of changed his life, impacting it with a lot of positivity.
It turns out that when Tom Hanks was a ‘nobody,’ just someone who was starting out in his career, acting in the Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival, in Cleveland, there were two known actors at that time who helped Hanks navigate the early challenges of his life. There was a certain George Maguire and Michael John McGann who helped transform a young, unknown actor in Tom.
Hanks reminisced his starting years and extended an ode to these remarkable and helpful men, sharing some key insights from his life:
“These two actors shared their joyful lives and professional passion with all of us in the company. When I was around them in the dressing room, in the wings, at the bar after the show or taking in the Feast of the Assumption in Cleveland’s Murray Hill, they were the professionals I admired, examples of the kind of actor I wanted to be — and the kind of human being I hoped to become,” Hanks wrote, adding that the two encouraged him to drive to New York City with them to continue to performing. “New York City is where actors and artists go to test their talent and their wherewithal!”
Furthermore, the depth of Hanks’ gratitude to his early friends can be understood by just how warmly they helped their fellow young actor friend. When Hanks arrived in New York, it was none other than Maguire who gave the “Apollo XI” actor a couch to sleep on and even gave him a coat during the difficult New York winter period when the mighty Hollywood star could not afford one.
Adding further to those memorable days of his early struggle, in a story published on CNN, Tom would further go on to add:
When McGann and Maguire taught him how to file his taxes for the first time and a refund check arrived, Hanks said he felt as if he’d won the lottery.