Without people to be their fans, there wouldn’t be a single celebrity on Earth. Sure, there would still be wealthy people in the business world, but there wouldn’t be film actors or popular musicians. Fans are what help drive profits in the entertainment industry and in turn prop up particular celebrities into a stratosphere where they can become worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
However, despite having millions of fans that help them earn all this fame and fortune, not all celebrities love having a fanbase. With the advent of social media, celebrities are more accessible to fans now than ever before, which can create some negative interactions. Long gone are the days of Hollywood’s Golden Era when seeing a celeb in public or having the chance to speak with them directly was nearly impossible.
Let’s look at some of the biggest celebrities in the world and get their thoughts on their fanbases whether it be positive or negative. We’ll also take a look at some of the most positive and negative celebrity interactions to date, some of which ended in tragedy.
The Biggest Stars
Here are what some of Hollywood’s A-listers have said about their fans and what they tend to hear the most from them:
“My fans are absolutely incredible and are a real accomplishment,” Pitt said while adding that when most fans see him in public, they tend to quote the film “Se7en” by yelling “What’s in the box!?” Pitt said he doesn’t really mind being spotted in public and likes to interact with fans, but the only time that they shouldn’t is when he’s in the bathroom.
Not many celebrities have been as interactive both in-person and virtually with fans as “Terminator” star and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. One of the biggest reasons he was able to succeed in his political campaign was because of his interactions. He has encouraged fans to interact with him when they see him in public and likes to get on Reddit to interact further.
“I like to hear the truth from the people rather than what the press’s interpretation of the truth is which you all know, sometimes is a little distorted,” Schwarzenegger said. Of course, the line he hears the most when in public is “Get to the chopper!”
The Star of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” series Chris Pratt has talked about how he doesn’t like to take photographs with fans, but that doesn’t mean that he shuns them completely. “I have to be economical with my time,” Pratt said. “If I go out and want to do normal things, I have to be comfortable disappointing people. So I just don’t take pictures with people…So I say, ‘Would you settle for a handshake?’”
Marvel Cinematic Universe superstar Scarlett Johansson (among many other films) isn’t a big fan (no pun intended) of how many people try to snap photos with her while out in public. “I’m constantly surprised by how rude people are,” she said. “You’ll be having an intimate dinner with a friend and there’s somebody on the table behind with a cameraphone pointing at your face…I’m not traumatized by it but I find it can bring out the worst in humanity sometimes.”
The Best Interactions
There have been many instances where celebrity-fan interactions have been incredibly wholesome and funny. Many of them are anecdotes that have been preserved on social media whether in the form of a long story or the caption of a photograph. People have talked about their interactions with celebrities including the late Steve Irwin, Dolly Parton, Keanu Reeves, Emma Stone, and more.
The list of positive interactions is thankfully incredibly long, though we can’t go into the detail of all of them. Most of them have been in a public setting or on social media where celebrities feel more comfortable interacting with people. From fans shooting hoops with Adam Sandler to John Cena spending countless hours with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, there’s no shortage of wholesome stories.
The Worst Interactions
Of course, unfortunately, there have been some truly tragic times in which an interaction with a fan led to a celebrity’s death. Beatles singer and guitarist John Lennon was killed by Mark David Chapman in 1980, Latin superstar Selena was killed by the president of her very own fan club, and “The Voice” star Christina Grimmie was even killed at a meet and greet when going to hug a fan.
There have been some other negative interactions that thankfully have been far less tragic. Fans can catch celebrities on a bad day or in an inconvenient place such as a restaurant, airport, or even in the bathroom (a la Brad Pitt’s negative interaction). The rule of thumb is, if you see a celebrity, don’t come running up to approach them, but there’s nothing wrong with saying “hello” while walking by.