Tom Hanks’ Improv Skills to the Rescue During ‘Henry IV’ Medical Emergency

Tom Hanks used his considerable improv skills to keep his theatrical audience calm and entertained during a medical emergency.

Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson, are currently performing in a production of “Henry IV” at the Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles. During a performance on Wednesday, June 13, an audience member became severely ill, being reported as unconscious and sweating.

Since the show’s crew is made up of military veterans, who all have basic medical training, they assisted the audience member until help arrived.

The show could not restart during this pause, so a few minutes after the audience member fell ill, Tom Hanks came out on stage in full costume with his prop sword and started ad-libbing in order to break the tension and keep the audience entertained.

He continued to crack jokes and interact with the audience for the 15-minute emergency break, keeping everyone calm in the process.

You can see the full video of his improv above.


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