I'm not native English speaker so sometimes 'the' is confusing. Teachers say that you can never use 'the' before a person's name except family's name, for example 'the Simpsons'. Really?

So, How about this case: (I wrote these sentences)

A: Wow, Can you believe it I met Tom Cruise today.
B: Who is Tom Cruise? Do you mean the Tom Cruise in the movie 'Mission Impossible'?
A: Yes, the Tom Cruise. He is soooo handsome.
B: Wow, today is your lucky day.

So, in this sentence, can I use 'the'? @.@ (I'm confused)


Yes, your example is quite idiomatic.

In general, we do not use an article with a proper noun (unless the noun contains a prepositional phrase). There are some exceptions to this - for example, the names of rivers or oceans (The Euphrates, The Pacific Ocean).

However, whenever we encounter the situation you describe - where somebody has the same name as someone incredibly famous, and you want to clarify that you are talking about the famous one, it is common to insert the definite article; but when we do this, it is always spoken with emphasis, or perhaps italicised in writing, so as to stand out as deliberately ungrammatical.

The way most English speakers would emphasise the definite article when used this way would be to use the "thee" pronunciation (to rhyme with "free"), and to emphasise the "ee" sound.


Non-native speaker here.

The cases of "the" proceeding a given name that I think I have heard in informal language are mostly when there is more than one person with the same name involved:

The Mike you'd like to talk to just left.
(there is more than one person whose name is Mike who, for example, works at this office.)

You're not the Mike that used to deliver pizza to me.
(maybe humorous)

You've got the wrong Mike, buddy.
(someone calls you when, coincidentally, they meant to call someone else with the same name as yours.)

The other case that I think I have also heard is when you want to say "you have changed".

You're not the Mike I know.

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