Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson Announce They Have Tested Positive for Coronavirus in Australia

Actors Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson announced Wednesday evening that they had both tested positive for the coronavirus while in Australia.

In a statement posted to his official Twitter, Hanks announced that he and his wife, Wilson, decided to get tested because they had fallen ill with what they thought was a cold.

"We felt a bit tired, like we had colds, and some body aches. Rita had some chills that came and went. Slight fevers too. To play things right, as is needed in the world right now, we were tested for the Coronavirus, and were found to be positive."

"We Hanks' will be tested, observed, and isolated for as long as public health and safety requires," Hanks added. "Not much more to it than a one-day-at-a-time approach, no?"

Newsweek reached out to Hanks' representatives for comment, who shared Hanks' social media post.

Hanks and Wilson were reportedly in The Gold Coast, Australia for preproduction on an upcoming Baz Luhrmann film. The film, currently untitled, is based on the life of Elvis Presley. Hanks will play Presley's manager, Colonel Tom Parker.

The film is backed by the Warner Bros. studio, who released a statement of their own. The studio said it was "aware that a company member" had tested positive for the disease, and that the studio was "working closely with Australian health agencies to identify and contact anyone who may have come in direct contact with the individual."

It is not yet known if Warner Bros. was referring to Hanks, or if another crew member had possibly given Hanks and Wilson the disease. The studio confirmed that the person who tested positive is receiving treatment.

"The health and safety of our company members is always our top priority, and we are taking precautions to protect everyone who works on our productions around the world," Warner Bros. said.

tom hanks rita wilson
Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, shown here attending the 92nd Annual Academy Awards, announced that they had tested positive for coronavirus while in Australia. Amy Sussman/Getty

Australia currently has over 120 confirmed cases of the coronavirus that causes the diseases COVID-19. The majority of Australian cases are in the state New South Wales. The Gold Coast, where Hanks and Wilson were, however, is in Queensland which has 20 confirmed cases. The Queensland cases are primarily located in the Gold Coast area.

Worldwide, over 121,000 people have contracted the virus, however over 66,000 of those have fully recovered.

coronavirus, map, countries, world, cases, covid-19
A graphic from Statista shows the global spread of the new coronavirus as of March 11. More than half of the 120,000 afflicted have recovered, while over 4,300 have died. Statista

World Health Organization advice for avoiding spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

Hygiene advice

  • Clean hands frequently with soap and water, or alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Wash hands after coughing or sneezing; when caring for the sick; before; during and after food preparation; before eating; after using the toilet; when hands are visibly dirty; and after handling animals or waste.
  • Maintain at least 1 meter (3 feet) distance from anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
  • Avoid touching your hands, nose and mouth. Do not spit in public.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or bent elbow when coughing or sneezing. Discard the tissue immediately and clean your hands.

Medical advice

  • If you feel unwell (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) seek medical care early and call local health authorities in advance.
  • Stay up to date on COVID-19 developments issued by health authorities and follow their guidance.

Mask usage

  • Healthy individuals only need to wear a mask if taking care of a sick person.
  • Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
  • Masks are effective when used in combination with frequent hand cleaning.
  • Do not touch the mask while wearing it. Clean hands if you touch the mask.
  • Learn how to properly put on, remove and dispose of masks. Clean hands after disposing of mask.
  • Do not reuse single-use masks.

Uncommon Knowledge

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

About the writer

Matt Keeley is a Newsweek editor based in Seattle. His focus is reporting on trends and internet culture. He has covered internet history and popular culture extensively. Matt joined Newsweek in 2019 from Hornet Stories and had previously worked at Westwood One. He is a graduate of Pacific Lutheran University. You can get in touch with Matt by emailing Languages: English.

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