‘Cast Away’: What Island Was the Tom Hanks Movie Filmed On?

Tom Hanks did not film Cast Away “600 miles south of the Cook Islands,” as Helen Hunt says in the movie. The survival drama yanks viewers onto a deserted island with FedEx systems analyst Chuck Noland. After his plane crashes, the character remains on a remote island for four years.

As one of the most beloved films, fans want to know what island the crew chose for Cast Away. It couldn’t have been a prime tourist spot; the cast and crew needed electricity and basic needs to shoot a movie.

Tom Hanks sits in shock ashore of a remote island in Cast Away
Tom Hanks in ‘Cast Away’ | 20th Century-Fox/Getty Images

There is ‘Cast Away’ rumored alternate ending

Viewers remember what happens between Chuck and his almost-fiancee, Kelly (Helen Hunt). After Chuck finds a way to sail offshore, a ship rescues him from the water. FedEx rejoices, and Kelly faints when she finds out Chuck survived.

After she thought Chuck had died, Kelly moved on and married someone else. Viewers’ hearts break every time they rewatch Kelly and Chuck reunite.

But was there an alternate ending? Countless viewers claim they watched a different conclusion. Instead of Chuck looking into the distance and smiling, viewers remember him getting back in his car and driving.

Not only that, but Upbeat News indicates that Chuck opens the infamous wing-engraved FedEx package. Apparently, the alternate version had Chuck open the box on the island. In it were two salsa jars and a note, which reportedly read, “You said our life was a prison. Dull. Boring. Empty. I can’t begin to tell you how much that hurt. I don’t want to lose you. I’m enclosing some salsa, the Verde you like. Use it on your sticky rice and think of home. Then come home—to me. We’ll find the spice in our lives again. Together. I love you. Always. Bettina.”

However, neither the studio nor Hanks has confirmed either rumor.

Where was the ‘Cast Away’ island location?

Some of Cast Away‘s filming locations aren’t difficult to decipher. The movie starts and ends in the same location: a Texas crossroads. But where is Chuck and Wilson’s deserted island? Here’s a hint: it’s not the actual “Castaway Island,” also known as Qalito.

The precise location was the uninhabited Monuriki island. Monuriki is one of the Mamanuca Islands in Fiji, as is Castaway Island.

After audiences watched Cast Away, many visited the South Pacific hideaway. Tourists and travel agents dubbed it “Cast Away Island,” which enabled the confusion with “Castaway Island.” Monuriki is of volcanic origin and is maintained by the people of Yanuya.

Some viewers think ‘Cast Away’ was based on a true story

Countless viewers thought Cast Away was directly based on a true story. A plane crash over the Pacific Ocean is not impossible. In fact, several flights have vanished or crashed in reality.

Nevertheless, Cast Away was not directly based on a real event. Hanks spoke with The Hollywood Reporter on where he came up with the storyline.

“I made Cast Away because I wanted to examine the concept of four years of hopelessness, in which you have none of the requirements for living—food, water, shelter, fire, and company,” the Forrest Gump actor explained. “I was reading an article about FedEx, and I realized that 747s filled with packages fly across the Pacific three times a day. And I just thought, ‘What happens if that goes down?'”

Viewers can stream Cast Away for free on Tubi.

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