When little known soccer team Leicester City won the Premier League on May 2, Tom Hanks' wallet won, too. And it won big! Really big!
In late April the affable actor was promoting his latest movie, "A Hologram For The King," when a reporter asked him about his beloved Aston Villa soccer team who had just been relegated to a lower division within the sport. Tom joked that he would cry if he thought about it too much.
"That's bad," he said of his favorite team's demotion. "But you know what I did at the beginning of the season? I put [$146] on Leicester, so I think I'll do ok."
"Ok" would be an understatement of epic proportions. At the beginning of the Premier season, Leicester was 5,000-1 underdog to win the league. In other words, for every $1 bet, you would win $5,000 if they bested the league, which they did on Monday.
In Tom's case, he would have won $730,000 from his meager bet!
When pressed by the reporter on the red carpet, Hanks backed off a bit, but kept the mystery alive, saying, "Maybe I did, maybe I didn't… Not bad, huh."
The thing is, no one seems to know if Tom is serious or not. His publicist told ESPN that she didn't know if her famous client bet on the club either.
In terms of David vs. Goliath, Leicester was probably three David's to win the league, considering they would have to overtake juggernauts like Manchester City, Manchester United and Arsenal. ESPN notes that one U.K. bettor placed a $1.15 bet on the unlikely champs and the bookie actually wrote "pigs might fly" on the ticket. Cinderella has nothing on Leicester.
By comparison of how unlikely it was for Leicester to win, English bookmakers have listed Kim Kardashian West as a 1,000-1 shot at becoming President of the United States in 2020. Remember, Leicester had five times longer odds than a Kardashian administration ruling Washington D.C.
Feel free to laugh at that, but then again, people were laughing at Leicester at the beginning of the season. Now, Tom Hanks is laughing all the way to the bank…. maybe?