Celebrity appearances at a convention....

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by todd s, Nov 3, 2004.

  1. todd s

    todd s Lead Actor

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    This last weekend I had the opportunity to attend the Chiller Theater show in Secaucus, NJ. They had around 60 celebrities from tv, movies, wrestling and literature. I went not only to get some autographs, but to take some pics with the celebrities to use to decorate my theater room.
    Anyway, I get there early and get right in, avoiding a huge line. It was very bizarre and a bit uncomfortable. You see these celebrities set up at tables around the tent. Most seem to be regulars on the appearance circuit. Because, they had signs and banners made up. Most seem to charge $20 for an autographed photo and then allow you to take a picture with them. Some charged not only for an autograph, but to even take a picture with them.
    Why I felt uncomfortable. Well, while most had people waiting to meet them. Their were a few celebs who barely had anyone coming to them. And some of the celebs seem to be not interested, even almost annoyed at being there. Don't get me wrong. Most of them were very nice. Kudos to Kevin McCarthy, Linda Blair and both Sam Jones and Melody Anderson for being very nice. What saddened me were the celebs who I thought would be nice, but were either crabby or looked like I was bothering them. They include David Carradine and B5 celebs Billy Mumy and Mira Furlan.
    Now, in their defense. It was the third day of a busy show. So they might have been tired.
    In the end after spending more money then I really wanted to. I was able to take photos with over 17 celebs, including all of the people I wanted.

    ps-Matthew McGrory(the giant from Big Fish) was very nice, but man is that guy big. [​IMG]
     
  2. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    After going to Dragon Con on a regular basis since 1998, I've seen my share of celebs at conventions. It's true, some are crabby, but some are also very good at making their fans feel happy to be in their presence and vice-versa. It's work, and some are up to the task, and some are not. But if you treat them respect, it's usually reciprocated.

    I rarely get autographs or photos taken with the celeb, just never been my thing. But the autographs/glossies are a source of revenue (or charity fund-raising) for the celebs who may not be working in the biz anymore. June Lockhart is one of the most organized celebs when it comes to providing a good glossy photo selection, and providing a protective sleeve/cover for the photos. She's very fan-friendly-oriented towards her fans.

    Celebs are just people, but their roles in movies or TV can give you a sense of nostalgia and connection to them, even if you've never met them in person until meeting them at the conventions. Just be pleasant, and it's usually returned in kind.
     
  3. LarryDavenport

    LarryDavenport Cinematographer

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    My Mom used to have friends who went to Star Trek conventions, and I was told that Harlan Ellison was a prick. I was sorry to hear that as I was a big fan of his at the time.
     
  4. todd s

    todd s Lead Actor

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    Another thing. I used to go to the Creation shows. I would wait on a line at the show and pay nothing for an autograph and photo. Now, they charge an admission fee, a fee for an autograph and a fee to take a picture with the celeb! And it is not cheap. For example, at an upcoming show. Ben Browder(from Farscape) charges $50.00 for an autograph and another $40 to take a picture with him. Granted they take the picture on their camera. But, that is ludicrous.
     
  5. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Harlan Ellison can be a prick, but it's usually only reciprocated if someone is initially being prickish/insufferable with him. I've seen him 3-4 times at Dragon Con, and his stories are hilarious, especially the ones where he recounts his run-ins with pricks and knuckleheads.

    The rise in autograph prices are a small by-product of the cottage industry of selling of autographed photos on Ebay and by autograph dealers. Like I said, I'm not all that excited about paying someone $25-$50 to scribble their name on a photo, but getting to meet them or see them in person is fine with me.
     
  6. Yee-Ming

    Yee-Ming Producer

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    My brother recently went to a convention (in Belgium?!?) where he got an autograph from David Carradine on his Kill Bill Vol. 2 DVD sleeve -- his comment was Carradine was just rather coldy professional about it and not too chatty.

    In contrast, Dirk Benedict was apparently very friendly and was happy to talk with the fans; my brother had lugged the fold-out digipak of my BG set there and Benedict autographed that [​IMG]
     
  7. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    I can understand this, for every "fan" asking for an autograph how many are just in it to sell it for profit?
     
  8. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    The same thing happens in sports memorabilia, you'd be surprised by the Ebay phenomena. So that's why the celebs are either getting greedier or making it so that people aren't turning a bigger profit in the re-sale market.

    The prices for sketches from comic book artist at conventions are also been going up because of "fans" selling the sketches on Ebay and other places.
     
  9. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    my boss has a friend that deals in sports memorabilia, I couldn't ever figure out why we have all this crap around the office....
     
  10. Matthew Brown

    Matthew Brown Supporting Actor

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    Todd -
    I was also at the convention that day. Bill Mumy actually went out of his way to say hello to me because I was holding my two year old daughter. I guess she gets the best reactions.

    I know what you mean, though about the demeanor of some of the celebrities. I got the feeling that David Carradine may have been tired of only being known for being in Kill Bill.

    I had to get Ruday Ray Moore's autograph. I'm not a big autograph person but i had to have Dolemite's.

    All in all it's a fun day but once a year is good. I don't want the novelty to wear off. I think the Chiller conventions have gotten a little too big. They have a wide veriety of celebrities but I enjoyed it more when the guests were limited to horror and B movie stars.

    Matt
     

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