Weekend Roundtable: Have You Ever Met a Celebrity?

Celebrities may seem so unapproachable when you see them all glammed up in their fancy dresses and tuxedos on the Oscar red carpet, but they’re ultimately real people and have lives to live like any of us. You may have even run into one in person, whether at a public publicity event or by strange happenstance. In this week’s Roundtable, we tell stories of our celebrity encounters.

Tom Landy

I’ve had a chance to meet a fair number of celebrities. One of the first I met was Hulk Hogan when I was about nine or ten. Just in the past couple years I’ve also met a few other big stars including Ron Perlman, Neil Patrick Harris and William Shatner.

I have two favorites. The first was a handful of cast members from ‘The Walking Dead’ at last year’s Calgary Expo. This includes Lew Temple (Axel), Ross Marquand (Aaron), Scott Wilson (Hershel), David Morrissey (The Governor), and Danai Gurira (Michonne!). Out of all the celebrities I’ve talked to, these were some of the nicest and most personable – especially Mr. Wilson. Such a great guy.

My other favorite meeting occured a few years prior at the same convention. It was the 25th anniversary of ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ so all seven main cast members including Sir Patrick Stewart himself, plus Denise Crosby and Wil Wheaton, were in attendance. Now I’ve met numerous ‘Trek’ alums individually before, but seeing the entire cast all in one place was probably the most surreal experience I’ve ever had.

Tom and the Star Trek: TNG cast

Shannon Nutt

Thanks to my former editorial job at an online entertainment retailer (which, incidentally, no longer provides any editorial content), I’ve been lucky enough to interview a number of celebrities. Due to my location on the East Coast, a huge number of these were simply phone interviews (or “phoners” as us industry types like to call them) which were either published or uploaded as podcasts on the web site of my former employer. Over almost a decade of work, my interview subjects included William Shatner, Anthony Michael Hall, Kirk Cameron, ‘X-Files’ creator Chris Carter and producer Frank Spotnitz, producer Frank Marshall, author R.L. Stine, and – in one of the more fascinating interviews I’ve done – ‘Hustler’ publisher Larry Flynt… to name just a few you might be familiar with. (I also talked to a ton of actors and directors who are lesser-known.)

As far as meeting celebrities in person, I’ve done a lot of that as well, as I like to go to many sci-fi and comic book conventions. Around this time last year (April to be precise), I got to go to my very first Star Wars Celebration (in Anaheim, CA) and meet some of the franchise’s most famous actors, including Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Billy Dee Williams.

Shannon with Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill

My most recent celebrity encounter was this past September, when I talked to Mitch Pileggi from ‘The X-Files’. Funnily, we didn’t talk ‘X-Files’, but rather about his stint on the ‘Dallas’ reboot. I also got to talk to Bill Shatner for what was probably the fifth or sixth time over the years… although I doubt he has any clue we did a lengthy interview about 15 years ago (something I never bring up).

The nicest celeb I’ve met (only counting my in-person encounters here) was Mark Hamill, hands down. He seems to be a great guy and really appreciates his fans. The worst? Adam West… but that’s a story for another Roundtable!

Mike Attebery

Other than exchanging a few words with Woody Allen years ago, the only celebrities I’ve really interacted with were Marisa Tomei and Vincent D’Onofrio when I worked as a production assistant on a movie they made in my hometown. I was so shy that I could barely speak a word to Tomei. I did talk to D’Onofrio and his wife – who were both hung over – and gave each of them some of my Advil.

M. Enois Duarte

I had the privilege of working on various film and TV productions when I was younger, and I enjoyed meeting many celebrities. However, since those meetings were more work related than personal, I thought I’d share my chance encounter with Kevin Costner. At the time, I was walking around the Warner Bros. lot and talking to a couple friends when I suddenly realized I was standing right next to this really tall dude. Looking up at him, it took me a moment to recognize who I was standing next to, but as soon as I did, he looked at me and I instinctively said hello in a surprised tone. Nothing really happened during the encounter. I simply shook his hand and told him I was a fan of his work. Later, I realized he was on the lot working on ‘The Postman’, likely doing some final post-production touches, either the editing or possibly the sound. In either case, I would say this is one of my more memorable celebrity meetings.

Luke Hickman

My circumstances are a little different than most who have “celebrity sightings.” Back when I used to cover the Sundance Film Festival each year, I participated in as many interview opportunities as possible. I met many actors, directors, comics and musicians. So instead of a shameless list of name-dropping, I’ll share my favorite celebrity experience.

28 Days Later Danny Boyle Autograph
Many filmmakers choose to shoot their films in Utah, but I’ve only known one to make it a real community effort. When Danny Boyle shot ‘127 Hours’ in the locations in which the true story unfolded, we Utahns certainly knew it. When it came time for the film to open locally, he held a local red carpet premiere for all the crew members and their families. After the red carpet event, Boyle left the screening for a scheduled 90-minute mingling session with members of the Utah Film Critics Association. In a swanky hotel restaurant’s lounge with fellow critic friends, I got to shoot the breeze with one of my very favorite filmmakers.

The night had two cool highlights: First, while discussing and analyzing ‘127 Hours’, I explained my interpretation of one not-so-obvious aspect of the film, to which he replied with the biggest smile and enthusiastically exclaimed, “That’s what I was going for!” The look on his face was priceless. Later, I had no shame in asking him to sign my Blu-ray copy of ’28 Days Later’, which is my favorite Boyle film.

Adam Tyner (DVDTalk)

I’m not even sure where to start!

I once spent a day on the set of ‘Big Wolf on Campus’ in Montréal and palled around with the entire cast, including that episode’s guest star Corey Feldman. In a completely random coincidence, I met actress Rachelle Lefevre – who’d starred on ‘Big Wolf’ several years earlier – while waiting in line for the Tower of Terror at Disneyland.

Most of my brushes with stardom took place at comic conventions or following live performances. I met a bunch of the stars of ‘Mystery Science Theater 3000’ after a ‘Cinematic Titanic’ live show. I chatted up most of the cast of ‘Scott Pilgrim vs. the World’ as well as writer/director Edgar Wright and comic creator Bryan Lee O’Malley at the San Diego Comic-Con in 2010. Kristen Bell put her arm around me at a meet-and-greet in Chicago. I’ve met Weird Al so many times that it was kind of like “Oh, hey Adam!” after a while.

Adam with Weird Al

I met Jim Gaffigan back in early 2002 before he really broke through and was still doing stand-up in clubs. Zach Galifianakis once borrowed my glasses for a stand-up bit. I’ve also chatted with Michael Rooker, the 1997 lineup of Barenaked Ladies, Sloan, MxPx frontman Mike Herrera, the late great Tuscadero, Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, They Might Be Giants’ John Flansburgh, Ariel Rechtshaid when he was fronting a ska band (the guy’s writing/producing for Adele and Madonna now!), and more comic book talent than I could possibly begin to name. I used to be somewhat good friends with future ‘Bachelor’ contestant Katie Levans. The list keeps droning on and on, but those are the highlights.

My family has me beat. My father was part of the film union around these parts (IATSE Local 491!), doing camerawork for basically every production that rolled through Charleston, SC for a while there. He met all sorts of celebrities as a result of that. He also had a very tiny label oriented around fishing and instructional videos, and he’d get me autographs from people like Al Lewis and Lloyd Kaufman at industry conventions. My brother-in-law was Kevin Bacon’s stand-in on ‘Death Sentence’. Jeff, his wife Dana, and my now-wife Maggie wound up becoming friends with director James Wan as a result.

Chris Boylan (Big Picture Big Sound)

Hmmm… does growing up with Adam Sandler count? Probably not. He wasn’t a celebrity when I knew him and I haven’t seen him since high school. I’ve had a few close encounters. I was working on a play once and we wanted to get Al Pacino to come see it. (He had been friends with the actual person we’d written the play about.) We found out he was in town to see a different play in the same theater so I went up to him at intermission, introduced myself and handed him the tickets, then quickly retreated. Friendly enough guy. Not very tall. He was with Beverly D’Angelo and she was crying a bit. (I think their play was better than our play… or Al Pacino is just a meanie.)

CES is sometimes good for celebrity sightings. I met Dana Carvey after he did a short routine at the press preview event a few years back. Also, not particularly tall, but very friendly. I met Jillian Michaels (former trainer on ‘The Biggest Loser’ and now star of her own Reality TV show) at CES. She was there for an endorsement appearance. I was gnoshing on nachos and figured out after the fact that I was actually in her Green Room where she was prepping for the appearance. Oops. “Ooh, ooh, I’m a big fan!” he says, through a mouthful of nacho chips (her nacho chips). Friendly enough, though. Also… not very tall (but she had a smoking hot body, of course). But not for me.

Chris with Dana Carvey

In terms of star power, I guess the coolest encounter was when my friend Geoff Morrison and I were getting sushi at a place in L.A. called Asanebo. Super expensive, but amazingly good food. Small place with about 12-14 tables. Geoff went outside to make a call and came back grinning. “See that table behind the divider over there?” “Um, no, it’s behind the divider.” “Exactly. And behind that divider is George Clooney.” “Cool.” Then the waiter discretely pointed out, “Didn’t you notice who’s over in the other corner?” It was Gary Oldman. Geoff wanted to say, “Batman? Commissioner Gordon. Commissioner Gordon? Batman” but we decided discretion was the better part of valor. They were both sitting down, so I’m not sure how tall they are. I guess you could Google it. Needless to say… it was really good sushi.

Chris Chiarella (Sound & Vision)

This week’s topic suggested to me a tale of a random encounter more than a paid meet-and-greet or one of the wonderful opportunities made possible by our profession. So I’m reaching all the way back to film school in the 1980s, when the sight of light trucks and trailers parked on the streets of downtown Manhattan would set my movie-obsessed heart aflutter. On one particular afternoon in the spring of 1984, I had the good fortune to be free of classes for several hours in the middle of the day, the better to stalk international star Sylvester Stallone while he was shooting a scene for (gulp) ‘Rhinestone’. While I would watch the finished product that summer at the theater where I worked and be less than impressed with the results, this was STALLONE here, veteran of three ‘Rocky’ movies and his first turn as Rambo by this point. I even ran a question by him as he was signing the second of two autographs: “Is there going to be a Rocky IV?” A man of few syllables that day, he merely grunted, “Yeh.”

That might have been my first encounter with a major celebrity, and while I wasn’t able to snap a photo myself, a very talented photography student/friend captured the moment beautifully, and gifted me a print to display proudly along with the star’s artful “Sly” scribble and the Flair pen he used to create it.

Sylvester Stallone

Josh Zyber

Years ago, my wife and I went to a wedding for one of her coworkers. The bride told us that one of her bridesmaids (perhaps even Maid of Honor, I don’t remember), Amy, was a comedian in a sketch comedy show called ‘Upright Citizens Brigade’ on Comedy Central. I’d seen it once or twice but didn’t register the face. I think I may have said hello to her and exchanged brief pleasantries.

A couple years later, she joined the cast of ‘SNL’. To this day, my wife insists that I “know” Amy Poehler because I met her at a wedding once before she was famous.

Have you met any celebrities in real life? Tell us your stories in the Comments below.


  1. Csm101

    I think I’ve mentioned this before but when I was a pizza man I delivered a late pizza ( no fault of mine ) to Ethan Embry at the Hyatt Grand Cypress in lake Buena Vista. He stiffed me but he shaked my hand. I saw Warwick Davis at a best buy one time, I tried to get my wife to take a picture of him with her razor phone but she didn’t want to. A few months ago I was at a gelato place called Jeremiahs and Kate Upton showed up there with what seemed like her friends and family. I took a very blurry sneak pic. I stood behind a guy buying a tv at a target a few years back and it was taking forever. I saw the guy sign the cashier’s ticket so I asked the cashier who he was and I believe he said Ken Griffey jr. This is pushing what a real celebrity is, but Farrah teen mom came to where I worked about five years ago although none of us knew who she was at the time. Also at work I saw a guy with an odd looking beard and mustache and I was staring at it and as he got closer, I realized it was Hugh Jackman sporting his Black Beard for the Pan movie.

  2. photogdave

    A few years ago I worked at store that sells professional video/audio/photo gear and does a lot of business with movie production.
    We would get a lot of tech guys in and they would recommend us to the talent, so I met quite a few actors, directors and musicians. Off the top of my head I sold gear to and chatted with: Robert Elswit, ASC (cool guy); Mandy Patinkin (cool guy); McG (dick); Aaron Eckhart (dick); Nikki Sixx (cool); Bob Rock (super cool) Anne Heche, Joel Gretsch (Shatner’s son-in-law and super cool guy), Teegan and Sara and their mom (very cool) and more…
    When the Police were rehearsing in Vancouver I emailed Andy Summers and suggest he visit our store. He came to find me, bought some Kodak film and chatted cameras with me for about ½ an hour.

    While working as a Princess Cruises photographer I met a few actors and athletes. Gavin MacLeod, Captain Stubing himself, was aboard for the launch of the then-world’s largest cruise ship. He let us use him as prop in our portrait shoots, which earned us a ton of money! I have a photo of the two of us “doing the Isaac”.

    Outside of work the first celeb I met was post-Big Trouble in Little China/pre-Sex and the City Kim Cattrall.
    I was working at the newspaper in the small town where she’s from, and was covering a local baseball game. She was up in the bleachers watching the game with some local friends. Once of them came down to me and said I should take her photo for the paper. I said I didn’t want to bother her and just needed to shoot the game. He kept insisting so I finally turned around, snapped a shot and went back to work. After the game her friends dragged her down to me and insisted she shake my hand and sign my notebook. She was really nice about it and I just felt bad that her friends put her through that because although I like her, I wasn’t particularly star struck.
    Lastly, when I saw Gladiator in the theatre in Barcelona, the whole auditorium was empty except for me, Sting and a couple of his people. I didn’t want to bug him so I didn’t say Hi, but I did notice he put his feet up on the seat in front of him.

  3. Mike H

    i was in the elevator and the door opened and in walked David Carradine. He was doing some voice over work for a show he hosted on one of the floors of the building I worked in. We had a quiet ride down to the lobby, I was debating whether to acknowledge my recognition of him or be respectful, I chose the latter…..for a little bit that is. We got out and he started talking about the rain in Los Angeles (a rare event) as we both walked to the door of the building. As we parted ways I turned back and shouted to him “Kill Bill was awesome!” He waved a thankful gesture and that was that. A few months later he was dead. Just an interesting brief moment with a celebrity.

  4. Zuria

    I work at Miami International Airport and am usually involved whenever a film crew shoots on location. As a result, I’ve hung out with Harrison Ford, David Frankel, Martin Sheen, Sean Penn, Antonio Banderas, Sarah Jessica Parker, Collin Farrell, Sean Connery, Michael Mann, Joel Shumacher, Gong Li, Sydney Pollack, Louis Leterrier, Jason Statham, Francois Berleand, Rachel McAdams, Wes Craven Whitney Houston, Genesis Rodriguez and Nicolas Cage. Most were nice and down-to-earth, especially Wes Craven.

  5. As a music writer and reviewer, most of the celebrities I meet are attached to music and not movies. However, a few years ago I did find myself at a local party with Harrison Ford and Calista Flockhart amongst other guests. It ended up being fairly stereotypical. For about 15 minutes, Harrison talked about an armoire he was restoring at home, while Calista stood off in the distance looking perturbed and checking her watch.

  6. Ross

    I’ve met a few celebs, I attended film school in Toronto at the international academy of design and technology (closed its doors several years after). There I met Christopher Walken, Robin Williams and Barry Levinson. They were filming Man Of The Year in the CBC building where our school was also located. Walken was a little closed off while Mr. Williams was very charming. My interaction with Levinson was great. I asked who I believed was his assistant if I could meet him, she was very nice and was a little surprised I asked. She said not to many people request to meet him, typically they want to meet “stars”. He was very happy to speak with me, when he found out I was attending film school he became excited, you could feel his passion for film radiating from him. We chatted about Canadian cinema, he asked what my favourite Canadian film was, my response was the Sweet Hereafter, he seemed to appreciate that. He signed a script I was working on. All of my fellow students were younger than I and not one of them knew who I was conversing with. There we all were, maybe 20 aspiring film makers and not one person knew I was speaking with the director of Sleepers, Rain Man and Bugsy!

    I also ran into Philip Seymour Hoffman in Time Square. I literally ran into him, it was around 2am, I had more than a few beers I was walking with my head down smoking a cigarette on my way back to my hotel when we both bumped into one another. He was walking with a backpack and a hat pulled down so he couldn’t see me. We both apologized and we both carried on, then it dawned on me so I turned around and yelled Philip, he stopped and turned around. I told him Boogie Nights was one of my all time favourites (still is), and I told him his performance was incredible. He thanked me and that was that.

  7. EM

    All my celebrity encounters worth detailing here have been at public events:

    I may have offended Roger Corman at an audience Q&A following a screening of The Tomb of Ligeia. After noting similarities to Hitchcock’s Vertigo and Psycho, I asked if there had been any “conscious modeling”—only then to realize I was essentially asking him if he had tried to rip Hitch off! (Granted, I was asking this of a savvy artist-businessman who has ever sought to capitalize on trends, but still…) But Corman jocularly gave a good answer, to the effect that he thought that sometimes Hitchcock had done some “conscious modeling” of Corman’s output!

    I may have startled Bobcat Goldthwait at one of the first screenings of his Bigfoot horror film, Willow Creek. It was Halloween night, and a friend and I showed up in costume. Bobcat was standing next to the ticket-taker, and when he turned around and saw us, he certainly acted startled! He is a little high-strung, isn’t he?

    I may have disappointed David Prowse after a screening of a locally produced film, Saving Star Wars, which was largely shot at an official Star Wars convention and featured Prowse in essentially an extended cameo. After the film and a talk, Prowse signed autographs. When it was my turn, I welcomed him to our city, and he responded by saying nice things about our little burg, and a rather charming conversation took shape. Then Prowse started signing for the next person in line, but he continued to talk to me. Feeling guilty that I was essentially stealing the next fan’s opportunity to converse with Prowse, I thanked Prowse and took my leave…but I swear that Prowse looked genuinely disappointed by our parting, as though he were the fan and I were the celebrity! Well, I still see him (if not vice versa) nearly every day—that personalized autographed photo of him as Darth Vader stands on my computer desk, seemingly threatening me as I type these very words! (We will double our efforts!)

    • Thulsadoom

      It’s funny you mention David Prowse. I had a similar meeting with him when I was really young (about 18-19 I think). It was the first proper convention I’d been to (And I believe it was the first Babylon 5 convention, certainly in the UK). Although he wasn’t in B5, he goes to a lot of general conventions, raising money for arthritis charities.

      Anyways, I digress! I was so chuffed to get his autograph, but he was also selling Star Wars photos of the other cast and stuff. What I hadn’t realised is that his autograph was included in the price of each photo. So I bought a Photo of Darth, for him to sign, and a nice photo I liked of Mark, Carrie and Harrison. He was really nice and charming, and after signing his autograph he was chatting away and also asked if I wanted him to sign the other photo. I said no, it was okay, thinking “It’s not fair to make him sign an image that’s not of him!” then later I twigged and thought “Oh, crap! I’ve snubbed Darth Vader!” I felt so guilty for ages, that this nice guy had offered to sign his autograph again for me, and I’d basically gone “Nah, no worries, I’ve got this one.” 😉 He was the first proper famous autograph I’d ever got, and I was more worried of offending him, by getting him to sign a pic that wasn’t of his character lol!

      I’ve since gone to quite a few conventions, with my fiancee, and we’ve got lots and lots now (Babylon 5, Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who, Farscape, classic Galactica, GoT, Primeval, etc) . Not BIG stars, but actually more fun ones! One that stands out was Virginia Hey (Zhaan from Farscape, and of course Mad Max 2). Such a really lovely woman, it was like you a Dave Prowse, she was busily chatting to us and we ended up apologising and moving on because we were taking from the moment of the next people in line. 😉

      • EM

        Prowse struck me as a great companion to have in the next airplane seat (other than the fact that we’re both a little tall to comfortably fit, at least in the coach seats I’m usually stuck with). I don’t mean that at all as a fanboy—he seemed so charming and articulate that I expect that if he wanted to talk at length about crocheting, I’d enjoy the chat even though the topic does not ordinarily interest me all that much.

  8. Celebs – They’re people too and as long as you don’t go ga ga over them they’re actually quite fun to be around. I have known people to get all stupid and unable to talk, picture Cliff & Norm from Cheers anytime they meet a beautiful woman.
    When I worked in Arizona for a company that manufactured Camera Cranes it was normal to go somewhere on-site (usually California) and see tv celebs. To name a few people on-site: Jay Leno, Rosie O’Donnell, Bob Barker, Charles Barkley (post NBA) to name a few. Well, these were the chattiest of them, there were many more.
    One production crew we knew well was from Turner Sports and any time WCW Wrestling was in town (Phoenix) we had an open invite. I was the only one that ever took them up on the offer. Being in the back stage where all the wrestlers hung out. This was around the NWO era so of course Hulk Hogan was there. When WCW was absorbed by WWF and it all became WWE the invites still continued. Picture yourself in a lounge catered by Kraft Services and everyone there eating and chatting, laughing it up. Picture being asked where any of the local spots are, eating delicious foods and just seeing everything from the other side of the camera. (Side Note: Anyone that has ever heard of people getting fat from Kraft Services, believe me it is easy to do, it was all fantastic food)
    And of course one local hot spot is Cooperstown where of course Alice Cooper was a regular, afterall he owned the place! There were a few other hot spots I would sometimes drive for, these places shall remain nameless and the celebs as well.

    One time though I did not have to leave our facility at all. A production company came to our area to film for the movie “The Kingdom” starring Jennifer Garner & Jamie Foxx. And of course at Jen’s side was Ben Affleck. This company used a couple of facilities on our street as well as a portion of the 101 Freeway in Mesa for the high speed chase, which is a few miles from where I lived. A piece of trivia related to this production-they had to shoot some of it TWICE. It was Arizona, it was summer, needless to say the storage truck for the film was not refrigerated-OOPS.

  9. William Henley

    I got several, but for many of them, I am going to have to think about how I am going to word stuff. You see, with the exception of only a couple, most I have met through organizations I am a part of, and work we did together. I realize that not everyone on this forum may support that. The biggest celebrity story i have (as in big celebrity who actually invited me over and we hung out for a while and ended up appearing in media coverage with them as a result) has lately been wrapped up in a lot of controversy.

    So, before I answer this question, I need to put some thought into it. I don’t think I am going to omit everyone or lie about what happened or anything, but rather I need to think about who my audience is and how I am going to tell the story for the reasons of 1) trying to avoid offending people and 2) trying to avoid negative feedback, based on who or what I am involved with (a couple of the staff here who I am friends with on Facebook may understand why I am giving this some thought)

    I may also put up a few pictures on my website and link to it in the blog (as I am unsure If I can use image tags in a wordpress comment, and even if I could, I am unsure how many tags I could use, so a single URL would probably be the best bet).

    So I will either revisit the thread this evening or over the weekend and give my response.

    • Timcharger

      My guess:
      Former CEO of fossil fuel company and Vice-President,
      at a hunting ground against deadly, vicious fowl,
      with buckshot in the face.

      What I win? What I win?

    • William Henley

      Okay, so let’s go at it. By the way, most of these are not controversal, but some are.

      The first celebrity I recall meeting was a Soviet Cosmonaut – Valentin Lebedev. Before the Soviet Union fell, he was invited to speak at my middle school. No clue how we got him – he had recently returned from space after spending 211 days (at that time, it was the longest time any human had spent in space), but we had him. I had photos of that, but they were lost in a fire.

      A couple of years later, we were up at the Texas Rangers game, and the owner of the Rangers, George W Bush was there. So a bunch of us ran up and got his autograph.

      Many for the next few years were local celebrities.

      In 1999, there was a church shooting, and my home youth group was attending an event at that church. I was in college, and I first got the news via the AOL News ticker while I was in class one night. The next morning, I got news via e-mail that one of the kids was dead, another was in the hospital. I rushed home to help out my home church. I know they brought in a famous evangalist, but I don’t remember who it was. But I do remember that they had someone who was in Crisis Relief come, who was planning the memorial service, and I was asked if I could think of a Christian singer whose music might be appropriate to play. I responded “well, most of the Christian artist that the kids like now are rock, and I am not sure if that would be appropriate for a memorial. But Michael W Smith is always popular, and he would be appropriate.” So I go back to answering phones, telling CNN and the BBC and NHK that we do not have a statement at this time, we will release statements soon, etc. The crisis relief lady then comes in and says, “Okay, its done, we got Michael W Smith and he will perform at the memorial.” So, I got to meet him.

      In college, we were in a small city of 150,000 people, but the city had three Christian universities. I worked sound and lighting for some groups that came in, including Petra and Cademon’s Call. This would include helping the band, adjusting mics, praying with them, we would usually have dinner together, stuff like that.

      In 2001, I studied in Salzburg, and one weekend, we went to Carnival. There was this amazing singer performing on a stage in a public square. The guy was really good. After the show, I went up and introduced myself to him, and we talked for a couple of minutes. I mentioned how good he was, and was hoping maybe he could get signed. He kind of chuckled, and mentioned he had released an album or two, gave me his name and website. Turned out he had released more than a couple of albums, and had several number one hits on the European pop charts. His name was DJ Otzi.

      Shortly after returning to the states, they had a gym opening in my area, and they had managed to get several Olympic stars to come. So I went to the grand opening and got to meet Dominique Moceanu and Shannon Miller, as well as a couple of guys from the US men’s gymastic team.

      In 2005, the Kidd Kraddick in the Morning show had managed to get Dakota Fanning to come and do an interview. I took my goddaughter up to meet her and the morning show.

      In 2010, my neighbor, CJ, had a garage sale. Went over and bought a few things, and noticed that it looked like he was selling almost everything. We asked him about it, and he said he was trying to raise money to get to LA. Didn’t think much about it, and a couple weeks later, he was gone. A couple of months later, another neighbor came and knocked on my door. “Hi, so wanted to let you know that the streets will be blocked off for a few hours tomorrow, CJ is coming back, and there is going to be a television crew with him.” I was like “a television crew? What show?” She responded “American Idol. He is in the finals or something.” My roommate and I were like “We’ve been watching this year, the only one in the top 3 that is even from Texas is Casey James. Ca… CJ… CJ is Casey James? Whoa!”

      In 2012, I started attending a megachurch, and I run camera up there. Kari Jobe is on our worship team, and Robert Morris is our lead pastor. Through the church, I’ve gotten to meet a few big Christian celebrities, including Kirk Cameron, Max Lucado, Joel Osteen, Michael Jr, Hillsong Young and Free, Rend Collective, Steven Curtis Chapman, Glen Beck, and Mike Huckabee, just to name a few.

      Last year, a friend from Russia came to stay for about a month. The first day, I took him to my church, and 4Him was doing a concert that weekend, and they did a song during the worship service. One of the singers is a worship pastor at my church. My friend was floored, he said that they listened to this group in Russia. After church, I was giving him a tour, and it was about an hour after service, so I went to show him the worship team’s Green Room, and to our shock, 4Him was still back there hanging out. We didn’t want to be rude, but they invited us in to hang out for a couple of minutes, and my friend got his picture with one of the singers of the group.

      Last Year, I got to meet the Duggars. I am not going to go into details about everything, but it started around June where, after something I had done, I got a thank you card from them. Couple of other things happened, and in October, they invited me up to Arkansas for a party they were having. I was so shocked, I had not been expecting that. I mean, like in my wildest dreams I may have thought it. Anyways, I went up there and got to meet the family, and to my surprise, TLC was there filming the event. So I was in a few shots when the first episode of Jill and Jessa: Counting On aired. I didn’t get time to talk to the whole family, but Jackson and a few of his friends sat with me for dinner, I got a chance to interact with Michelle, Jim Bob, Derrick and Grandma, talked briefly with Joy and Jinger and Jill, briefly said hello to Anna, and McKenzie and Josie and a few others were running around after the event and kept running into me.

      There are only a few of these I have pictures of. They are at

  10. I’ve met many through my Sci-Fi Convention attendances. Only one or two were disappointing. Bruce Boxleitner (Tron) was too busy talking to Cindy Morgan (Yori/Lora, who was very sweet, by the way) to give a damn about what I was trying to say, about how my mom was a huge Scarecrow and Mrs. King fan. I had waited for who knows how long just to get up to the table.

    Aside from that, most everyone else was more than happy to indulge me. The stand outs are as follows:

    Ray Park (Darth Maul from Star Wars: The Phantom Menace) was super nice and very friendly. During his panel discussion that day, a man dressed as Darth Maul excitedly said that he had the dual lightsaber featured in the movie, and ran to his car to get it. After he got back, Ray took it and gave us a stupendous display of his skills and essentially became Darth Maul for us on stage! This was right after the movie came out, so needless to say it was a huge event. Also from Star Wars, (Attack of the Clones) was Jay Laga’aia (Captain Typho). He is quite a character! When I met him in 2006, the convention hotel was nearly destroyed by flooding. Not only was the place dilapidated and near unfit for habitation, but there was water leaking everywhere. Jay whiled away the time playing his guitar and singing, without a care in the world.

    One of my absolute favorite encounters was at Star Wars Celebration IV in Los Angeles, 2007. I was sad when Biggs died in Star Wars, and to meet the man was a thrill! He was so kind and a pleasure to talk to.

  11. I’m a journalist who can’t seem to find (paid) work as a journalist. As such, I have interviewed a fair share of local celebrities that won’t ring a bell to American High Def Digest readers. After digging through my archive, I did find a few encounters that should at least sound familiar:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZbjkvVlLTE (Ernie Hudson)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifK9Zr63fzA (Alan Silvestri)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zraPhR_gE_I (Sean Patrick Flanery)

  12. charles contreras

    Here’s the list of celebrities that I’ve met during various autograph shows over the years, in no particular order: Val Kilmer, Adam West, Burt Ward, Linda Blair, Frank Gorshin, Richard Kiel (Jaws from the Bond movies), Erik Estrada, Ernest Borgnine, Larry Hagman, Elliot Gould, Michael Beck (Swan from The Warriors), Karen Lynn Gorney who starred opposite John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever, Antonio Fargas (Huggy Bear from Starsky & Hutch), R. Lee Ermy, George Kennedy, Karl Hardman & Marilyn Eastman who played the married couple in the original Night of The Living Dead, Margot Kidder (Lois Lane from the Superman movies), Clayton Moore (The Lone Ranger) and Henry Winkler (The Fonz from Happy Days). I may have left out a few names. Everyone listed here were very nice, Henry Winkler was an absolute gentleman in every sense of the word.

  13. Met Adam Scott last year at a screening of The Overnight. Nice guy. Very gracious.
    When I was a kid I went to a talk given by Roger Ebert and afterward he signed my copy of Questions For The Movie Answer Man. Seemed like a solid dude.
    My first celebrity was a weird one-at the 1994 NBA draft I talked briefly with then-commissioner David Stern. Had a huge entourage around him, which I thought was weird. Called him Mister Commissioner, which he seemed to like.
    In music I’ve interviewed a lot of people but no one that I think most people would know. I did get a few minutes with Afrikaa Baambataa, and that was cool.

  14. Csm101

    I can’t believe I forgot this one. I’m a big fan of the band Tool. The lead singer, Maynard James Keenan makes wine for a living. Maybe in 2008 he was going around to Whole Foods stores with his business associate and if you bought a bottle from his vineyard, he would sign it. I bought a bottle of wine from him, two actually. I think they’re called chupacabra. They were sitting at a table in an empty room after going through a small security check. There were maybe two body guards there. I learned alot about myself that day. I had the opportunity to say something to him, but I didn’t. It feels weird to engage with celebrities, even of I admire them. I do love my autographed bottle of wine though. I’m not sure if I’ll ever open it.

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