Tom Hanks, born Thomas Jeffrey Hanks, is one of the most prolific – and richest – actors of our generation. Hes often regarded as an American Cultural icon alongside Meryl Streep and Samuel L. Jackson. He’s best known for starring in iconic films like Cast Away, Forest Gump, and most recently A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood and Greyhound . Hanks is a Hollywood staple renowned for his moving performances and incredible versatility – and he”s got the awards and trophies to prove it.
Hanks accolades include 2 Academy Awards, 7 Primetime Emmys, a Tony nod, and a presidential Medal of Freedom awarded to him from former president Barack Obama. In 2020 Hanks received the coveted Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMile lifetime achievement award.
We could go on and on applauding him for his professional life, but what exactly do we know about his private life? Seeing as he’s one of the richest actors in Hollywood history, his family has has had the spotlight pointed in their direction for quite some time now – I mean, they’re practically Hollywood royalty at this point.
Stay tuned to find out if his kids have followed in his footsteps or if they’ve decided to go their own way. Discover who the black sheep of the Hanks family is, and just how on earth did Tom and Rita Wilson meet in the first place?
Tom’s First Marriage
Samantha Lewes, or Susan Jane Dillingham as her birth certificate reads, was born on November 29th 1952. She was originally from San Diego but very little is known about her parents, childhood, or whether she has any siblings.
Lewes had small roles in a handful of few movies, but it was while she was attending Sacramento State University that she met Tom. She was a bit older than him but that didn’t seem to to be a problem. The duo quickly hit it off and started forming a little family together. They had their first child, Colin, when Tom was just 21 years old.
After Colin was born, they decided it the right thing to do to get married. Lewes and Hanks tied the knot in September 1978. In 1982, Lewis gave birth to her second child. Everything seemed like it was going well for the young little family. That is, until a woman by the name of Rita Wilson stepped into the picture.
Tom met Rita while he was still married to Lewis while he was working on Bosom Buddies. After meeting, they quickly got involved in a steamy and illicit romance that would prove to be the death of Hanks and Lewes’ marriage.
After they broke up, Lewes took a step away from the spotlight. She sadly died of bone cancer in 2002.
Hanks wasn’t exactly proud about how his first marriage panned out. In an 2013 interview with Express magazine he explained that because of his failed marriage he was essentially sentencing his kids to the same sort of painful feelings that he had at their age when his own parents split.
He further explained that he was too young and insecure when he married Samantha. He was just 23 at the time and he wasn’t fully ready yet to take on those kind of responsibilities.
Tom’s oldest child is definitely the most famous one. Colin is a successful actor, producer and director. He’s best known for his roles in King Kong and The House Bunny. He recently earned himself and Emmy nod for his impressive work on ‘Fargo’.
Colin is married to former New York Publicist Samantha Bryant. The two got hitched in 2010 and since have had two daughters together. Olivia Jane Hanks was born in 2011 and her little sister Charlotte Bryant was born in 2013. The little family unit also has a pet dog named Stanley.
Elizabeth was born on May 17, 1982. She was the second child from Hanks first marriage. Instead of pursuing a life exclusively in show business, Elizabeth has instead pursued a career in journalism. She’s written for The Huffington Post, The New York Post and and is a recurring contributor to Buzzfeed.
Liz did try her hand at acting a bit as well. She’s got a few acting credits under her belt. In 1994, she appeared in Forrest Gump alongside her father and followed that up with a small role in That Thing You Do! In 1996 – which her dad helped produce. Most recently she starred in the 2015 film Anchoraged.
Rita Wilson adopted both Elizabeth and Collin and enjoys a very close relationship with them.
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And make sure you keep watching to learn about Tom’s other two children and adorable grand babies.
Rita was born on October 26, 1956. She’s originally from LA and her birth name was Margarita Ibrahimoff. Like we already briefly touched on, Wilson and Tom met on the set of the 1980s sitcom Bosom Buddies. The duo quickly hit it off. According to Tom, It was love at first sight.
Hanks attributes their relationships success to the fact that the timing was right when they met and that they were both mature enough and willing to engage in an intimate connection. They got married in 1988 and have been happily together ever since.
Tom seriously loves that woman. He told Oprah that they have a connection that goes far beyond words like wife, girlfriend, or Mother. Their relationship is one of the most praised union Hollywood and they keep that spark alive by constantly working on maintaining a healthy marriage.
Hanks and Wilson welcomed two more children into there family with their first son, Chet, born in 1990 and the second, Truman in 1995.
The self-professed black sheep of the family, Chet was born in August of 1990. Chet fashions himself to be a rapper and an actor. He dropped his first single in 2011 titled ‘White & Purple’ and you might also recognize him for the relatively minor role of Blake on Empire.
Unfortunately, Chet has had a storied history with substance abuse, having been addicted to crack cocaine and spending multiple stints in rehab trying to get clean. He finally managed to straighten up his act after he and long-time girlfriend Tiffany Miles had a daughter. Sometimes that’s what it takes to step up to the plate.
The baby of the Hanks family, Truman Theodore Hanks, born in 1995 has decided to keep his personal life a bit more low-key than his siblings. Instead of pursuing a career in front of the camera he has taken an active interest in behind-the-scenes production.
He served as a production assistant and camera trainee on The Cloverfield Paradox in 2018 and the Charlie’s Angels reboot in 2019. His upcoming projects include Wrath of Man which is set for a 2021 release and West Side Story also expected to premiere in 2021. For the latter he served as the assistant director of photography – so it looks like he’s moving up in the world.
Who knows, maybe he’ll give acting a shot someday just like his old man. He does after all bear a striking resemblance to his father – so does Colin actually. Must be good genes.
Tom’s Three Grandchildren
You would think that being the granddaughter of Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson would be pretty sweet, but apparently Tom’s three grand kids could care less about their inherited fame or fortune. According to Colin, his two daughter’s see Tom and Rita as just your typical average grandparent. They fail to recognize how important of figures they really are – but that might not be the worst thing in the world.
Tom reportedly loves to spoil Colin’s daughters Olivia and Charlotte and Colin isn’t exactly thrilled about it. He commented in 2019 that he’s a bit annoyed that his dad gives them all the things that they shouldn’t have and fails to listen to what he has to say about what they should be doing – although to be fair, that sounds exactly like every other grandparent in the world, right?
Olivia Jane Hanks
Tom’s first granddaughter was born on February 1, 2011. When she was born, she brought out Tom’s inner child. Colin Told Closer magazine that his dad is a kid at heart and that he loves playing tag and pretending to be a silly monster for his granddaughters.
Charlotte Bryant Hanks
When little Charlotte joined the family back in 2013, her grand daddy couldn’t be more thrilled. Tom took to Twitter just a month after she was born by setting very high expectations for her future. “Will rule world @year 2033” he posted. Colin also commented that his baby girl was as happy he and her mother were overjoyed and tired.
The youngest addition to the family Michaiah Tiffany Hanks was born on April 15, 2016. She is the daughter of Chet and his ex-partner Tiffany Miles. Even though Chet and Tiffany have gone their separate ways, they’ve established and amicable co-parenting situation to raise their child. Reportedly, Michaiah spends the majority of her time with her mother in Palm Springs.
Tom and Rita are very stoked to be, as they call it, the ‘cool’ grandparents. Tom might be a big-time movie star, but what he cherishes the most is the deep connection that he has with his wife, children and grand kids. And as time goes on, the Hanks family keeps on expanding and changing.
It’ll be interesting to see where each member of this easy-going Hollywood power-family winds up as time goes on. Hopefully Chet can figure his life out and Tom’s granddaughters eventually realize just how amazing of an actor their grandpa really is.
Anyways, that’s about all the time we have to discuss the Hanks family. They sure seem like one big happy family, don’t they?
What are you thoughts on Tom Hanks clan? Do you think that his kids and grand kids will keep carrying his torch long after he’s gone? Drop us a line in the comments section below.
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