From Forrest Gump To The Terminal: The Rise Of A Star



My fondest memories of Tom Hanks come from my childhood when I watched his film The Terminal. The film connected a chord with me, and I was deeply impressed by his portrayal of the protagonist. I remember the protagonist who was stuck in the US airport and couldn’t leave it due to Visa issues, because a war had spurred in his country. He ran here and there, slept in the airport, cleaned the floor, and earned small amount of money along the way. In between this; he builds affection for a girl, only to leave himself disappointed.

Tom Hanks had generated in me, the interest to follow Hollywood films more often. He is one person who can be given the credits for bringing a revolution in the film industry with his character role in his film Forrest Gump, where he played the role of Forrest Gump himself. He brought Robert Langdon from Dan Brown’s novels to life in  movies  like Angels & Demons, The Da Vinci Code and , Inferno, to be released in 2016. He is easily one of the most valuable actors in the film industry, having brought total business of $8.4 billion worldwide till 2014.

Tom Hanks has always been the talk of the town, with heart-throbbing admiration that comes from his fans wherever he goes. In a recent write-up in the Humans of New York Facebook page, a taxi driver shared his memories of the star. One night Tom Hanks stopped a taxi but taxi driver declined the trip because his working hours were done for the day. As Tom Hanks left, the taxi driver realized that the man who greeted him was not a commoner but the heart-throb of Hollywood. From his favourite film of Tom Hanks, the taxi driver loudly called him, “Wiillllsooon!!!!,”as the character that Tom played was Wilson in his film Castaway (2000) where he was also stranded in the sea.

Tom had given the taxi driver a name “Mr. Ferrari” as he was wearing a Ferrari Hat that day. Months later, the taxi driver received a call, when Tom invited him to watch his Broadway play where he got another chance to meet the star backstage. Tom greeted him with a cheerful “Mr. Ferrari.”. It’s really a beautiful memory which the taxi driver would cherish all his life.

Other than being known for positivity and the sense of belongingness that he generates within his team, Tom is also known for his constant words of wisdom. In one of his speech he said, “As long as you as an individual… can convince yourself that in order to move forward as best you can you have to be optimistic, you can be described as ‘one of the faithful,’ one of those people who can say, ‘Well, look, something’s going to happen! Let’s just keep trying. Let’s not give up.” The actor often visits his director friends on the sets of their upcoming films to give them a hand of encouragement and positivity.

Blessed with so much success in the film industry, with 2 Oscars for best actor to his name; Tom Hanks never forgets to thank the people who have helped him in his journey of a thousand miles. Recently, he praised the US President for bringing the idea of building more Community colleges that are free for students. Tom who has himself been a student of Chabot College which is a community college in Hayward, California gave all credits for his success to the two years he spent studying there.

An interesting fact about him is the naming of an asteroid after his him, that’s called “12818 Tomhanks”, which was reportedly discovered in the year 1996. This act by NASA is really inspiring.

As today holds the birthday of this Hollywood Legend, I would like to wish him all the very best for the wonderful films which he is working on, and shall do in the future. I pray to God to bless him with the best of health in the years to come. Tom, keep shining and making us believe that dreams do come true. Happy Birthday Wilson!


Gagandeep Singh Vaid

Image Source: The Viewspaper