My impression is that a celebrity can often feel like fans want something from them: an autograph, a photo or a hug. As a public figure who benefits from a following I do believe a certain amount of accessability is part of their work. The sacrifice for big paychecks and fame is the possibility that a daily routine may be full of fan interactions. In L.A. it is very “uncool” to be outwardly star struck. Celebrities are EVERYWHERE and the locals give them their space.
A couple of days ago, Jen (my director/celebrity stylist/lifestyle coach & creative consultant to the stars friend) were at a charming cafe in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Larchmont. I saw a woman take a seat at the table next to us and she caught my attention with her unique gait and mannerisms. It was MOLLY SHANNON! She is an all time favorite of mine. Her comedic energy is so pervasive and infectious. I alerted Jen via a text I typed and showed her on my phone. We ate in giggles and as we were getting ready to go, I said, “I have to do something. I am dying to!” Jen tells me, “Honey, I’m here for you whatever you choose to do.” So we got up to leave and I walked over to Molly who then was talking to a man who had come to meet her.
“I just want to tell you that I am so happy to see you. When I noticed you, I got so excited and nervous because I had to come say hello,” I gushed with practically tears welling up. She was so taken aback and touched with her expression. “It is so nice to meet you,” she said as we held hands in an extended hand shake. She was fantastic and so kind. Jen and I left in a laughing fit. We were so tickled by the experience. How powerful that Molly Shannon’s presence alone had made my day. I didn’t want a photo or an autograph. I wanted a real-life connection with someone I had been connecting with on the screen for years.
Then later we had to meet with the celebrity and his wife Jen had just dressed for their red carpet movie premier the day prior. They were returning the clothes. I had met them years ago at another fitting. As we greeted each other, they recognized me and we took a moment for greetings. He leaned in to give a cheek kiss greeting and I was so caught off guard (by them remebering me and being so open) that I backed away from it but he leaned further! Then to recover from an awkward moment I leaned in to return the hug. I was so worried that they would think I wanted some kind of connection with them that it made me a wierdo! hahah!
Have you ever approached a celebrity? What did you say? What would you say? When has someone/a stranger wanted to connect with you? When have you been genuine with your feelings and not wanted anything in return but was greeted with open arms? What is it about certain public figures that get you excited where others wouldn’t turn your head?
(photo of Molly Shannon by Gage Skidmore, via Flickr)