It’s hard to figure out what to say when you meet a celebrity. Whether you’re at a meet and greet where you only have a few seconds to try to sum up your feelings, or you’ve accidentally run into a familiar face in public where you should be able to introduce yourself more informally, most of us go blank when we have to talk to somebody we admire. Fortunately, celebrities are used to fans being nervous, but would prefer if you kept it casual and remembered that the people who produced the work that you look up to them for are still people!
Here are some people’s memories of times they did their best to make a good impression, or realized mom and dad were cooler than they thought when they found pictures of their relatives who got lucky enough to bypass the whole dilemma by casually hanging out or working with celebrities.
One Time I Saw Samuel L. Jackson At An Airport And He Saw Me And My Cousin Hovering Around Trying To Work Up The Courage To Ask Him For A Photo And Then He Came Over To Us And Said, ‘Y’all Motherf**kers Want A Photo?
My Dad With David Bowie In A Vacation In Greece. 1988
My Cool Mom Partying With Robin Williams And Billy Crystal In LA In 1982
One thing you should absolutely not do when you see a celebrity you admire is try to stealthily take pictures of them. If you’re at an event where they’re appearing formally, you’re better off waiting for an official photo opportunity where they’re prepared to look at the camera, and if you’ve spotted them somewhere where they’re off the job… well, nobody likes feeling like they're being followed, and you’re probably not as subtle as you think you are.
My Grandfather (Right) With Elvis Presley (Left) In Post-War Germany. Late 1950's
My Grandma Always Used To Tell Us About This Kid That Would Sing At The Resort On Her Vacations In Hawaii. Turns Out That Kid Was Bruno Mars. 1990
A lot of people are nice enough that if you introduce yourself and ask for a photo, they’ll be fine with obliging, but empathy should come first and foremost. Think about what kind of courtesy celebrities would appreciate from all the strangers they encounter who are just as excited to see them… that includes considering that they’ve probably heard the tagline from their most popular movie 10 times this week and a simple introduction would suffice.