Many people dream of meeting their favorite celebrity. Some people have whole websites and social media accounts dedicated to their encounters with the rich and famous. Meeting a celebrity can be very enjoyable, but it often requires some advanced planning. Here’s how to catch a glimpse, get an autograph, or say hello to someone famous.
Locating the Celebrity From Afar
1Read tabloid magazines and websites. Gossip magazines and blogs regularly post paparazzi photos of celebrities out and about. Look in the background of the photo. If there is a hotel, it’s likely that is where they are staying while they’re in town. If it’s a specific coffee shop or store, that might be a regular hang-out of theirs.
- Set a Google alert for your favorite celebrity’s name. News articles will appear, but so will information about their whereabouts, based on recent paparazzi photos and fan updates.
- Celebrity sighting is a popular hobby. Many people maintain blogs they update regularly with information.
2Follow Twitter. Many celebrities tweet regularly throughout their day. Following their twitter feed may lead to information on where they regularly go to the gym, go for dinner, or shop. Visiting these places will increase your chances of meeting them.
- Many fans post sightings of celebrities on their twitter feed. Setting an alert to the celebrity’s handle may inundate your feed, but could let you know if someone is in your immediate area.
3Follow Instagram. Uploaded photos from celebrities may produce clues as to where they spend their time. Look in the background of the photo for street signs, shop names, and other identifying characteristics of their location.
- Most celebrity Facebook accounts are run by their publicist, and not updated with information regarding their day-to-day life, but you may find information from comments left by fans.
4Search through online databases. Many websites exist that provide information on when and where celebrities will be coming for film and television filmings, book signings, public appearances, and speaking arrangements.
Locating the Celebrity in Person
1Visit Los Angeles, New York City, or London. Many celebrities live in these cities, and spending time there may increase your chances of meeting someone famous.
2Network. Either make clear your hobby of taking photos with the stars, or casually mention your particular interest to one person. You never know who knows the guy who knows the guy who knows the guy who trains Brad Pitt.
- Play it cool. Just as you would protect your friends, colleagues, boss, or employee from someone who seems threatening, someone involved in the life of a celebrity is not going to introduce you if you seem dangerous, bizarre, or embarrassing.
- Express your interest in a particular field of art or entertainment, rather than one particular person. If your social and work network knows of your love of film, music, or theater, they are more likely to share information, tickets, and news pertaining to a wide variety of people in your interest group. You might get information on a Beyoncé concert if your friends know you love pop music. But if they think you only are interested in Taylor Swift, they may not bother to tell you.
3Ask around. When you go for coffee or lunch in a popular area, ask the people working there who comes in. Some people can be very open, and may even tell you which day of the week, or time of day, certain people tend to get their groceries or pick up their takeout.
4Read the Arts section of the newspaper. Theater performances, gallery openings, book signings, and other official appearances will be noted.
- Visit the theater or gallery where the celebrity is scheduled to appear. Talk with the people who work there. You never know who may tell you a bit of information regarding his or her whereabouts.
Meeting a Celebrity at an Event
1Buy tickets to the celebrity’s concert, play, or appearance event. By paying to attend the official event, you won’t need to wait outside, hoping for a glimpse.
- Get the best seats you can afford. The closer to the stage you are, the more likely they will see you. Some performers are very interactive with their audience and may take photos or chat with you.
- You can also pay for a VIP ticket that includes a Meet and Greet session. While very expensive, these opportunities usually come with great seats to the film, play, or concert, and a guaranteed photo of the two of you at the end. Most booking agents will explain exactly what is included with a VIP package.
2Keep an eye out for book signings. Celebrities will often promote themselves at book signings, both for their own books and books that are related to a project they work on. (For example, in 2012 Jennifer Lawrence signed copies of The Hunger Games at a New York City Barnes & Noble to promote literacy.) Many of these events are free. There are websites that can alert you to what is going on when and where.
- Contact the bookstore in advance to find out if the line is likely to be very long, what the photograph and autograph policies are, etc. Large bookstores handle many signings a year and know exactly what to expect.
- It may be difficult to get a photograph with a celebrity at a book signing; the bookstores usually want the line to keep moving. Don’t make yourself a nuisance, or you will be unlikely to be allowed to return.
- Most book signings do not allow people to get an autograph, or to join the line to meet the celebrity, unless the person has bought the item.
- Consider buying more than one book. This may give you more time to speak to the celebrity while they sign.
3Go to the stage door. If you have tickets to a play or show, find where the stage door or back entrance is. After the play, head straight there and wait for the person to exit. There will likely be many people waiting, but you may still get a photo or an autograph.
- Some performers may be very tired after performing a show and will not want to sign autographs or pose for photos. Always be polite and respectful and don’t hassle anyone.
4Visit a talk show taping. Shows such as The Daily Show, morning talk shows, and late night talk shows all have many celebrity guests per week. You can find taping schedules online so that you know when your favorite celebrity will be a guest.
- Like theaters, talk shows also have stage doors. Often arriving and leaving a taping is a staged event, complete with paparazzi and fans, but you may be able to score a quick meeting, depending on the celebrity and their schedule.
Meeting a Celebrity Out and About
1Visit places that celebrities also visit. While you may not be able to afford to shop at Prada or Louis Vuitton, you can still visit other places that celebrities also frequent. In L.A., locales like the Brentwood Farmers Market and Whole Foods are often frequented by celebrities doing their shopping.
- Stores usually don’t look kindly on people who loiter without making purchases. Buying something from the store, even if it’s small or inexpensive, will help ensure that you don’t make yourself unwelcome.
2Wait outside the hotel where you know they are staying. Press conferences and premiers often run late, so if you arrive in the morning, you may see the celebrity leaving for work.
- Lingering in the hotel lobby may get you in trouble, so consider having a drink in the hotel bar. Sit so that you can see who comes in and out of the hotel.
- Don’t be disappointed if you don’t see the person coming into or leaving the hotel. Many large hotels with a celebrity clientele have back entrances to protect their privacy.
3Wait near the tour vans for musicians. If you have attended a concert, ask where the tour vans are located, and try to get in that area. Many bands pack up quickly after the show, but some people may be hanging around and could introduce you.
4Get a job near where celebrities spend their time. Become a waiter at their favorite restaurant, a bartender at their regular bar, or a personal trainer at their gym. Working an eight hour shift greatly increases the odds you will be there when they are there.
- Make sure to get a job that lets you interact with the patrons. Jobs like valet parking and coat check, while not particularly exciting, are likely to put you in contact with celebrities dining out or staying in hotels.
- Always be professional. Most employers at places that celebrities frequent will not look kindly at potential harassment of their famous clientele. It’s fine to start up a chat or even ask for a photograph under the right circumstances, but if you become a nuisance you’re not likely to keep your job.
Using Proper Etiquette When You Meet a Celebrity
1Arrive early at events you attend. Depending on the event, some people may camp out overnight. Bring a book or some music to keep you entertained while you wait.
- Consider bringing a friend, particularly if you will be arriving several hours early, or waiting overnight. You can save each other’s spot in the line, take turns going to the bathroom, and bring back food and drinks as you wait.
2Decide what you want. An autograph? A photo? You may be able to get both, but if the person arrives late, is hurried past you by her publicist, or only spends a few minutes with fans, it’s best to know exactly what you will ask.
- Ask for your autograph to be personalized. This decreases the likelihood you will sell the autographed item for money, and increases the chances that they will sign it, or maybe start a conversation with you.
- Be prepared. Have a pen or sharpie with you, as well as something for the celebrity to sign such as a photograph or playbill. If they’re being generous and giving you an autograph, make it as easy for them as possible.
3Prepare what you will say. The celebrity may not have a lot of time, so have a short introduction prepared. Tell them your name and a sentence or two that expresses your appreciation for their work. Clearly and politely state your request, and always phrase it as a question (“May I take a photo with you?”) rather than a statement (“I want to take a photo with you.”)
- If you have a lot of things to say to the person, consider writing a letter and handing it to them at the event. They may read it when they have more time at a later date.
4Remain calm. This person’s music may have changed your life. You may think the two of you are undiscovered soul mates, but they have never met you before. Be friendly and polite, but avoid gushing and hyperbole. Excessive fawning, screaming, or adoration may make them uncomfortable.
5Smile and be friendly. Celebrities are very busy people and do many press and publicity events every month. Don’t be demanding or aggressive. Genuine friendliness and appreciation are more likely to be met with generosity.
- Always ask before taking a photograph. It may come across as presumptive or rude to just whip out your phone and start snapping without permission.
6Step aside. If you are attending an event or waiting at the stage door, there will probably be many others waiting too. After getting your photo, handshake, or autograph, let others meet the celebrity. They are likely just as excited as you are.
- Don’t be disappointed if you don’t get a handshake, or if the meeting is very quick. There will always be more opportunities!