Oh no – what happened to Wilson?

A few days ago, Reggie returned from the DVD rental place in Rondebosch with a big smile on her face.

“Oh, Flat Kathy, you’re going to love this movie,” she declared.

Well, I do love surprises, so I was very excited when we finally sat down to watch the movie.

It was called Cast Away and it starred Tom Hanks as Chuck Noland, a FedEx employee who is stranded on a deserted island in the South Pacific Ocean after his plane goes down. (Don’t read on, if you haven’t watched the movie yet and still want to watch it, alright?)


The movie shows Chuck learning how to survive on his own, using whatever natural resources he can find on the island, as well as items that are washed ashore from the plane crash. One of the things he finds is a volleyball.

One day, he cuts his hand very badly, while trying desperately to make fire, and he flings the volleyball from him in a fit of rage. When he finds the ball a little later, he notices that the bloody handprint on it resembles a face. After some consideration, he adds a nose, a pair of eyes and a smiling mouth. So he starts talking to the volleyball, which he calls ‘Wilson‘ (because that’s the name on the ball). The isolation and loneliness of living on this uninhabited and isolated island – there is no other land in sight – has made him desperate for company. And Wilson becomes his friend and confidante, with Chuck talking to him all the time, as he goes about his day. Wilson never says anything, but you can sense that he is listening and responding.

The Famous Wilson from the movie Cast Away (2000) starring Tom Hanks
The Famous Wilson from the movie Cast Away (2000) starring Tom Hanks. Picture credit: Wikipedia

After four lonely years on the island, Chuck builds a raft that takes him across the dangerous reefs, which surround the island. After making it through the pounding waves, he and Wilson (whom he has securely tied to the raft) find themselves in the open ocean. After a massive storm that almost capsizes the raft and drowns him, just as we think all the danger is past, Wilson becomes detached from the raft, and floats off. Chuck swims after him.

As Wilson continues to drift just out of reach, Chuck has to choose between letting go of the rope that ties him to his life-raft and rescuing Wilson. He chooses the raft, but is absolutely devastated and bereft at the loss of his best friend (you can watch this scene here). I was in tears by the end of that. Why did Wilson have to drift away like that?!

Chuck is eventually picked up by a passing cargo ship, and returns to his home in the United States, but we never see Wilson again. I think this is a serious shortcoming in the story.

I want to know: What happened to Wilson? Did he end up on another island? Was he picked up by a fishing vessel? Did a school of dolphins play with him? Was he rescued by a swimming turtle or a giant whale? Did he drown and sink down to the bottom of the ocean?

I would’ve loved to meet Wilson. I feel that he is a kindred spirit.

9 thoughts on “Oh no – what happened to Wilson?

    1. I am so pleased you agree with me, Amy-Lynn. I would also watch such a sequel!

      Oooh – perhaps I could audition for a part in it? Do you think I could? Oooh… I would love that!


    1. Hello dear Captain, I am delighted to see you popping by. There isn’t a Flat Kathy Fan Club yet, but perhaps I can ask Reggie to create one? Hmmm, I think this is a perfectly smashing idea.


    2. Oh dear, can you see what you’ve started, Captain John? She is such a flirt! Now she’s going to make me create a Fan Club especially for her. Ayyy…. she is unstoppable!


  1. F.K. you show amazing sensitivity and empathy toward an inanimate object. Your ability to humanize Wilson and worry about what happens to him is why I love you. Yes. I said it. I love you Flat Kathy. I could never feel that way about a mere volleyball !


    1. Oohhh yes, Rosie Bear, I just know you would! So much sand to dig, and palm trees to sniff, and water to splash through… yes, I can just picture another sequel: Tom Hanks stranded on a deserted island with Rosie Bear. Ohh, wouldn’t this make a most marvellous movie? Perhaps Lisa and Willie can help you to write a script for it? I’d include lots of rescues – I mean, where you rescue Tom Hanks from terrible danger, of course! And perhaps, to balance things a little and to keep the humans happy, one small episode where he protects you against something. But you should get equal size capital letters on the billboard!


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