After a brief hiatus this week to nurse my horrible allergies, I’m back with my first celeb encounters post. In case you didn’t see my first post on this, I’ll be writing about the different celebrities I’ve had the good fortune of seeing or meeting over the years.
If there’s any particular person you want to hear about, go check out that first post and my compiled list of celebs to see who I’ve actually had an encounter with and let me know in the comments of that post (or this one, that’s fine too).
When I don’t get comments, I’ve decided to just pick someone at random, so for today, that randomized selection is…
*drum roll please*
I saw George Clooney at the Toronto International Film Festival aka TIFF in September 2009 (you better get used to hearing all about TIFF because that’s where I’ve seen 90% of the people I’ve seen!)
As I’ve mentioned in the past, I love Ewan McGregor. No, don’t worry, I know this is a post about George Clooney, but there’s a reason I mention this:
I love Ewan so much that I have attempted to see him almost every time he’s come to TIFF in the last 10 years – which is pretty greedy of me because I actually did meet him and get his autograph at the Cassandra’s Dream premiere in 2007.
What can I say? That was in the days before smartphones that took great selfies – or at least the days before I had a smartphone that could take selfies – so I am still in a life-long mission to get a photo with him.
I went to downtown Toronto with the express purpose of trying to see Ewan, forgetting who else was in the movie. Needless to say… it was a pretty big star!
For some reason or another, I didn’t actually make it in time to get a good spot for the premiere. I remember sitting at Swiss Chalet with my sister where she’d popped in for food after work, and then sauntering over to the venue (across the street), only to realize we’d missed seeing Ewan… BUT then this guy turned up!
In addition to him, there was a driver who looked just like Kenny Rogers, so we went around yelling “KENNY! KENNY ROGERS!” at him – he found it amusing and waved at us. We were also happy to find that by a few hours later there was a rumour going around the TIFF area that Kenny Rogers was in town. And this was even in the days before Social Media was as used and rampant as it is now, so that literally just got around through word of mouth!
Having missed seeing Ewan at the red carpet, we decided to try for when they leave the premieres instead, assuming that wouldn’t really work out for us either because the back of the venue wasn’t (at the time) as well-equipped for fans and photo ops (i.e. no barriers up).
We did see Ewan, but only very briefly, he gave a wave before getting into his car, and also pretty sure this is the premiere when we saw Woody Harrleson too (but that’s a story saved for the time I pick him off the list…)
Then suddenly, Mr Clooney came out and ALL HELL BROKE LOOSE.
I kid you not.
People went rushing for him, and somehow in that mix, my sister and I got separated and I got pushed toward his back (I distinctly remember this too), while she got pushed toward his face.
That’s right, my sister got pushed RIGHT into George Clooney’s face.
And ridiculous (i.e. amazing) guy that he is, rather than cower, hide behind bodyguards or go running into his car when he saw how nuts people were being – this whole debacle actually started because he decided to come towards the fans, sans barriers, and sign autographs. All of this, too, while he had a broken hand!
Most celebs I’ve met and seen are accommodating and quite nice, but I’ve never seen another celeb who – upon seeing HOARDS (and it was truly a large group) of people waiting, with no barrier in site – walk towards the group rather than away from them,
I thought George Clooney was pretty cool at that point (I grew up watching Sisters and ER – actually, I just remembered that for most of my childhood, I called him “Falconer” thanks to Sisters 😛 ). After this experience, I thought “DANG, this guy is really cool!” Only someone truly easy-going and patient could have done what he did that night.
And great though it was to see one of the biggest names there is – not just in Hollywood, but in the world! – I have a feeling this is why Ewan ducked out a little quicker and quieter, because that’s usually how it goes when there’s a bigger name in the movie… So DANG YOU George Clooney, you were the first in the line of many reasons why I didn’t get a photo with Ewan!
As for did we get a photo of/with George Clooney (aside from that blurry, far away one above from the Red Carpet)?
Both my camera and my sister’s camera decided to stop working right when we got shoved toward him. I feel like she may have got a really blurry one right up in his face from what I remember, but I haven’t been able to locate that just yet. I do think she was also just very shocked to be right in his face too, so may have been hard to get a picture of him at that exact moment.
She did manage to get one of him just as he walked away though…
Also, important point of note – most celebs, when I’ve seen or met them (and you’ll hear more of this when I get to others) actually look WAY BETTER than you would even think they would. Most of the actresses are excessively radiant and beautiful beyond words; most of the actors are extra devastatingly handsome.
George Clooney… kind of looked… just like you’d expect him to…
Don’t get me wrong, he was nice-looking and plenty handsome, I suppose (to be fair, I, personally, have never found him “devastatingly handsome” to begin with), but…he wasn’t extra special and sparkly like other celebs have been.
Still, his commitment to taking time with all fans and being kind enough to jump right into the crowd, that was especially impressive to me! And from what I’ve heard, that’s how he always is! People told me he was taking tons of times with all fans again this year at the premiere of Suburbicon, which he directed.
So that’s my George Clooney story.
Let me know which of my other celeb encounters you’d most like to hear about.
Until next time!