Tom Hanks can add “fat knight” to his ever-growing resume.
The film star is poised to make his official Los Angeles stage debut as one of Shakespeare’s most beloved characters, Sir John Falstaff, in a summer production of Henry IV. Hanks’ wife and fellow actor Rita Wilson will also feature in the production.
The play will be a condensed version of two of the Bard’s plays, Henry IV Parts One and Two, and will mark the return of the Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles to the Japanese Garden on the West L.A. Veterans Affairs campus.
Daniel Sullivan will direct. He has previously helmed numerous productions of the Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park at the Delacorte, including an Anne Hathaway-led Twelfth Night, and won a Tony Award for directing Proof.
The production will run for four weeks beginning June 5 at the Japanese Garden, and 2,000 free tickets will be set aside for eligible veterans and active military members, courtesy of the Shakespeare Center in partnership with the West L.A. V.A.
Hanks and Wilson are longtime supporters of the Shakespeare Center, having previously appeared in various fundraisers for the center alongside the likes of Kenneth Branagh, Kristen Bell, Steve Martin, and more.
Tickets are not yet available, but interested parties can sign up for email notifications via the Shakespeare Center website.