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Tom Hanks says he'd get COVID-19 vaccine publicly to show it's safe

Back in March, the actor and wife Rita Wilson became two of the first celebrities to share they'd tested positive for COVID-19.
/ Source: TODAY

Tom Hanks and his wife, actor-singer Rita Wilson, both spoke publicly earlier this year about being diagnosed with COVID-19 and their recovery and quarantine experience. Now the beloved star says he's willing to take his openness one step farther.

During an interview aired on TODAY Monday, the "Greyhound" actor discussed getting the coronavirus vaccine, adding that he'd be willing to do so publicly.

“We'll be getting it long after everybody who truly needs to get it gets it,” he noted, given that health care workers and nursing home residents will have priority access to the vaccine.

Hanks and Wilson, both 64, were among the first famous faces to reveal they tested positive for the coronavirus back in March, before masking and social distancing became a part of everyday life. On TODAY Monday, he referred to their fight against COVID-19 as “a tough couple of 10 days" and stressed that his biggest concern was not getting anyone else sick.

“I think that was much more important, as the second half of the COVID-19 formula, was that we didn't give it to anybody. ... Locking down, we’d wear masks and we still do, not just so that we don't catch it but that you don't give it to somebody,” he said.

Asked by TODAY co-anchor Savannah Guthrie if he’d be open to publicizing his experience getting the vaccine to show it's safe and encourage more people to do so, Hanks replied without hesitation, “Oh, yeah, sure."

Hanks isn’t alone in his willingness to be on camera for the vaccination. Former presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama have all said they’d do the same. And last week, Vice President Mike Pence did just that with the Pfizer vaccine in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building near the White House.

Long before fans have a chance to witness Hanks get the vaccine, they can see him on screen in his next film and first-ever western, “News of the World,” premiering Christmas Day.