Case study – Tom Hanks
9 July 1956, 11:17 PDT (Rodden rating: AA; Collector: Rodden) Concord, California
Jupiter in Virgo, Mercury in Cancer
Saturn in Scorpio, Pluto in Leo
First Jupiter return October 1967, Feb, June 1968, age 11 years, 3 months
Saturn opposition, May 1971, age 14, 10 months
Time between first Jupiter return and last Saturn opposition: 3 years, 7 months
First Saturn return: January 1985,
April and October 1985
Second Saturn Return: November 2014
Fifth Jupiter return: August 2015
Tom’s parents had split and re-married different people and had produced several half siblings before his first Jupiter opposition at the age of 6. In a Rolling Stone interview, he said that he was an evangelical Christian and his perception of his teenage years is that he was disliked by both fellow pupils and teachers but he would yell out funny captions for film strips. He knew acting was for him and he spent his time watching plays alone, eventually winning his first accolade in 1978 (the year transiting Saturn was conjunct his natal Jupiter) playing a villain in The Two Gentlemen of Verona. 5 After this, he moved to New York and starred in low-budget films and eventually in the television comedy, Bosom Buddies.
Although the television series didn’t last, the impression Tom made on his audiences did. In 1982, as Jupiter made a series of three conjunctions to his natal north node, Tom made a guest appearance in Happy Days and caught the eye of Ron Howard who was casting for Splash. In 1984, just before his Saturn return (three hits between January and October 1985), Tom had starred in this box office hit as well as the successful Bachelor Party.
Shortly following his Saturn return, transiting Saturn was conjunct his North Node as he proved he could play a serious role. Nothing in Common (1986) was a turning point in his career. As transiting Jupiter opposed natal Saturn, Tom portrayed a boy who wished to be a man and became fully mature overnight. Big established Tom as a major Hollywood talent. The transits for this time are so appropriate, they are pure poetry.
Unfortunately, the next couple of years saw Tom lose his way slightly as he starred in a couple of duds. The ‘Burbs (1989), Joe Versus the Volcano (1990) and The Bonfire of the Vanities (1990) did nothing for his career. The only saving grace at this time was the Disney film Turner and Hooch. Saturn had opposed his natal Mercury from December 1988, and only Jupiter’s transit to the same position saw his career pull out of its nosedive.
The start of his third Jupiter return towards the end of 1991 saw him filming what would become the start of his climb back to the top of his game. A League of Their Own led to Sleepless in Seattle and then Philadelphia, the film for which he won Best Actor at the 1993 Academy Awards. During filming, and as the film was released, transiting Saturn squared its natal position and opposed Pluto’s position. For the role as a gay lawyer who contracted AIDS (at a time when the AIDS scare was at its highest as Pluto was in Scorpio), Tom had lost two and half stones (thirty-five pounds) and thinned his hair to play a dying man suing his firm for discrimination.
During the following year, 1994, transiting Saturn opposed natal Jupiter and Tom starred in Forest Gump as a man who witnessed, and even influenced, some of the major events of the latter half of the twentieth century. Tom won his second Academy Award for Best Actor and became only the second actor to achieve the accolade (interestingly, Tom and Spencer Tracy, the other actor, were the same age when they achieved this). After a series of three Jupiter conjunctions to his North Node, Tom then starred in Apollo 13 and was the voice of Woody in Toy Story.
Transiting Jupiter squared natal Saturn and opposed natal Pluto as he worked on Saving Private Ryan, a film for which he eventually won his fourth nomination for the Academy Award’s Best Actor (he had five nominations with two wins). The film has been called the finest war movie ever made at the Academy Awards. He went on to other successes in the same time period: You’ve Got Mail and Castaway (his fifth nomination for Best Actor at the Academy Awards).
In 2001, as transiting Jupiter was conjunct his natal Mercury in Cancer (Jupiter would make a series of three hits, the last in March 2002), Tom starred in The Road to Perdition, which was about a father and son who take revenge on the mobsters who killed the other members of their family. The film is striking for its lack of dialogue and concentration on emotion and imagery — influences that might be expected for planets in the sensitive sign of Cancer. He followed this role with Catch Me if You Can as a federal agent pursuing a con artist. In mythology, the gods Mercury and Jupiter were known for their trickery and ability to shape shift. These were the planets active during this time. In that same year, Tom assisted his wife (Rita Wilson) in producing My Big Fat Greek Wedding, a surprise runaway hit. In June 2002, he became the youngest recipient (at the age of forty-five) of the American Film Institute’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
As transiting Jupiter conjoined his natal Neptune in 2001, Tom worked on his role as a professor of religious iconology and symbology who escapes a murder charge with the help of a cryptologist in The Da Vinci Code. The religious themes and allusion to mysterious symbols share common ground with Neptune. When transiting Saturn made a series of three conjunctions to his natal Saturn in 2009, it was announced Tom would again play the role in Angels and Demons — and be paid the highest salary ever paid to an actor. Overall, he has been in seventeen films that have grossed over $100 million worldwide. Toy Story 3 is one of his highest grossing films, and was released as transiting Jupiter was square natal Saturn and opposite natal Pluto.
Tom’s 5th Jupiter return in August 2015, commences his “Age of Wisdom”. He has already had his second Saturn return and thus for the first time in his life, a significant Saturn transit occurs before a significant Jupiter transit. Tom may feel he is ready to sit back on his laurels and pass on his knowledge to others.
In November 2015, as Saturn transited his N Node in Sagittarius, Tom revealed his wife Rita had undergone a double mastectomy in April 2015. He said: “What has been amazing is how powerfully it plays out in a relatively short period of time. We all know by now what sort of hell that sort of health crisis is. It just comes out of the blue and everything else stops because the only thing to do is just drop everything else and pay attention to the myriad stuff that needs to be paid attention to.” Tom may not be an astrologer but he has expressed Saturn on his North Node so eloquently.
Copyright: Alex Trenoweth, 2013