Tom Hanks’ Son Colin Hanks Played Mister Rogers Before He Did

Tom Hanks has long been considered one of America’s greatest actors, a star who has received a slew of critical acclaim. A fan favorite due to his laid-back demeanor and approachable attitude, Hanks still makes interesting and unexpected career choices. There’s no doubt that Hanks has inspired generations. Even his son, Colin Hanks, was motivated to go into acting due to his father’s influence. Interestingly enough, while the elder Hanks received an Academy Award nomination for playing Fred Rogers in the 2019 film A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, his son portrayed Rogers first, in a 2018 project.

Tom Hanks is an iconic American actor

Hanks started acting in the late ’70s. He started in television before getting cast in Hollywood films. He had his big breakthrough in 1984 with the romantic comedy Splash, following up the role with parts in movies like Big and A League of Their Own. While Hanks has a natural talent for comedy, his work in dramatic films earned him awards buzz. Specifically, his lead role as a lawyer with AIDS in the 1993 film Philadelphia.

Hanks has appeared in such iconic staples as Forrest Gump, Saving Private Ryan, Apollo 13, The Green Mile, Cast Away, and Charlie Wilson’s War. He has been nominated for six Academy Awards, winning two throughout his career. He has also received seven Primetime Emmy Awards. In 2019, Hanks portrayed the television icon Fred Rogers in the acclaimed drama A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. While fans loved Hanks’ portrayal of Rogers, he wasn’t the first member of his family to take on the role. 

Colin Hanks played Fred Rogers in an episode of ‘Drunk History’

Colin Hanks, Tom Hanks’ oldest son, followed him into the acting profession. Like his father, he has a flair for comedy and drama. In a 2018 episode of the TV series Drunk History, Colin Hanks took on the role of Fred Rogers, portraying the beloved figure in a sketch that featured Rogers going to bat to protest his TV series from severe budget cuts. 

Once it was announced, later that same year, that Tom Hanks would be playing Rogers in the feature film A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, his son took to social media to lovingly troll the star. “Oh, did someone else get cast in a rival Mr Rogers project? I would hate to be them right now,” he wrote on Twitter. It’s safe to say that although Colin Hanks joked around online, he was hugely supportive in private.

Have Colin Hanks and Tom Hanks ever acted together?

tom hanks son colin
(L-R): Tom Hanks and Colin Hanks attend THE CINEMA SOCIETY & BROOKS BROTHERS host a screening of “THE GREAT BUCK HOWARD” at Tribeca Grand Hotel on March 10, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by BILLY FARRELL/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Tom and Colin Hanks don’t just share a fondness for acting – the two stars also look nearly identical. At least one director has taken advantage of their remarkable resemblance to cast the pair as father and son. In 2008, Tom and Colin Hanks acted alongside each other in the movie The Great Buck Howard. Colin Hanks portrayed a writer named Troy Gable, while Tom Hanks played Troy’s father. The stars don’t share much time on screen together in the movie. But it’s still enjoyable to see the two working on a project together.

In a 2009 interview with Parade, Colin Hanks opened up about acting with his father. “I was just glad we were able to do it in a movie that I really am so proud of and that means so much to me,” he said.

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