10 Actors Who Almost Died Because Of Intense Method Acting

10. Tom Hanks Picks Up A Staph Infection Playing Robinson Crusoe - Cast Away

Tom Hanks Castaway
Warner Bros

Cast Away - as directed by the great Robert Zemeckis - saw Tom Hanks stranded on a desert island, whereupon he spent the majority of the film talking to a volleyball and generally having a terrible time.

To prepare for his role as Fed-Ex man Chuck Noland, then, Tom Hanks went full on method; he gained 50 pounds in order to look "middle-aged," and then - after much of the film was shot and production took a year-long hiatus - Hanks lost all that weight and grew a massive beard, as to look like somebody who had been stranded on an desert island for years.

But it wasn't all that weight loss stuff that almost killed the actor; it was his "hands on" approach to the role. During filming in Fiji, then, Hanks - committed to living like a crazy island man - failed to treat a leg wound, which later gave way to a Staph infection. When Hanks finally got around to seeing a doctor, he was told that he was a mere few hours away from blood poising, and potentially death. "Wilson!"


Sam Hill is an ardent cinephile and has been writing about film professionally since 2008. He harbours a particular fondness for western and sci-fi movies.