Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)


Brand and Media Strategy

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Mimi Perreault

Committee Members

Chelsea Wessels, Shara Lange


In March 2020, Tom Hanks announced he had contracted COVID-19 while shooting the Elvis Presley Biopic in Australia. On Instagram, he encouraged fans to take the disease seriously and be aware of how severe of a disease it was. Character brands and nostalgia have been found to foster trust in products and encourage relationships with those brands. Using the lens of nostalgia and uses and gratification to examine Tom Hanks as a character brand, the researcher analyzed five blockbuster films with Tom Hanks as the lead character. The study used narrative thematic analysis to observe Hanks and the depictions of character identity, trauma, mortality, affectional emotion, memory, and catharsis in these films. The goal was to better understand how nostalgia might contribute to brand trust between the audience and the celebrity.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.