FACT CHECK: Did Tom Hanks Wear This Political T-Shirt?

Bradley Devlin | General Assignment & Analysis Reporter

An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows actor Tom Hanks wearing a t-shirt that expresses support for Black Lives Matter (BLM), LGBTQ rights and women’s rights, among other movements.

Verdict: False

The image has been digitally altered. In the original photo, Hanks wears a soccer jersey.

Fact Check:

The Facebook post that includes the altered image of Hanks reads “Well said, Tom” and includes a link where individuals can order the t-shirt. The shirt reads “Science is Real,” “Black Lives Matter,” “No Human is Illegal,” “Love is Love,” “Women’s Rights Are Human Rights” and “Kindness is Everything” in rainbow colors.

While Hanks has previously made public comments and acted in films in favor of some of the positions included on the shirt, such as LGBTQ rights, this photo is a doctored version of a picture Hanks tweeted in late June 2015.

In the original photo, Hanks wears a U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team t-shirt. He remarked, “Fake turf or not, I’m full Bosom Buds if coach Ellis needs me. No yellow cards! Hanx.” (RELATED: Does This Photo Show Tom Hanks Quarantined In Australia With Wilson The Volleyball?)

Hanks’ “Fake turf or not” comment references the controversial artificial turf used during the 2015 Women’s World Cup tournament. Some players objected to the use of the artificial turf, saying it caused turf burns and slowed recovery times, according to The Associated Press. The phrase “Bosom Buds” likely refers to the 1980s sitcom in which Hanks and actor Peter Scolari played men who “must disguise themselves as women to live in the one apartment they can afford,” according to the show’s description on IMDb.

The image of Hanks from 2015 has also been doctored in the past to promote t-shirts with environmental slogans such as “There is no Planet B” and “Unless. March for Science. Earth Day 2017.”

Check Your Fact could find no instance in which Hanks had been seen wearing the shirt depicted in the Oct. 3 post.

Bradley Devlin

General Assignment & Analysis Reporter
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