You may remember an actor from the early ’00s—he’s since fallen off the radar, with casting agents inexplicably blacklisting him from Hollywood—named Wilson. Starring in the heralded 2000 film Castaway, Wilson acted his leathered ass off opposite Tom Hanks, who gleefully soaked up accolades as awards committees snubbed Wilson for every best supporting actor nod out there.
I’ve often wondered about Wilson over the past 22 years. Had Wilson turned to a life of drugs and alcohol? Had Hanks bullied Wilson on the set of Castaway so much that he left acting behind? Or did Wilson simply cash his Castaway check and roll away into the sunset? As the years went by without so much as a single sighting of Wilson’s little palm-shaped face, I had convinced myself that his climactic scene in Castaway—where he floated off into the ocean—was actually an on-set incident and the poor guy actually did drown.
Imagine my surprise when, at last week’s home opener for the Cleveland Guardians, Wilson and Hanks reunited to throw out the first pitch. Do me a favor and watch the scene below, where (even though the public announcer threw some shade by introducing him as “Wilson, a volleyball”) the lovable little ball looks pretty damn healthy! I dare to say Wilson looks like he hasn’t even aged a day. If you watch the clip, Wilson even strolls around in giddy circles as Hanks tosses the pitch. It’s good to see. That’s all. If Wilson’s OK, maybe we are too. You can only hope that Wilson’s brief return to the spotlight will kickstart an acting comeback.
Anyway. If you happen to see Wilson bouncing across some remote block of Cleveland, or Los Angeles—wherever he is—give him a merry shout of WILSON!!!! I’m sure he’ll get a kick out of it.
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