Earlier this month, Oscar-winner Tom Hanks returned to the Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles to perform in Henry IV as the fat hellion, Falstaff. Falstaff is the primary companion to Prince Hal (son of Henry the IV and heir to the throne).
Fans were already thrilled to see Hanks play the iconic role.
"There lives not three good men unhanged in England, and one of them is fat and grows old." Love this one, my father directed it several times at Ashland. Thrilled you're into it! Break a Falstaff leg, and no single gloves left behind !!!— Lach 14 (@Lach1435) June 11, 2018
(Falstaff, Act 2 Scene 4)
But on June 15, Hanks wowed the crowd in a completely unexpected way!
An audience member passed out during the show, bringing the production to a halt. As the audience grew restless and medics tried to aid the ill theatre-goer, Hanks jumped back onstage and distracted the rest of the audience with improvised Shakespeare. Mr. Hanks remained in character as Falstaff, brought an audience member up onstage, and reprimanded patrons who tried to leave, calling them "scurvy rogues."
Many people agree that Tom Hanks is one of the greats, as his endless film accolades demonstrate, but this improvisation has been met with a new wave of awe and respect.
From Forrest Gump to Toy Story, Saving Private Ryan to Sleepless in Seattle, and now improvised Shakespeare, Tom Hanks just proved he can do just about anything.
talk to me about how great Tom Hanks is with the improv "Mr, Mango on my shoulder" bit in Splash.— jett rink (@jessiekaiser) June 16, 2018
Tom Hanks is a GOD
H/T - Twitter