Celebrity

10 People Share Their Most Awkward And Disappointing Celebrity Encounters

For many people, meeting their favorite celebrity is a huge deal. I mean, there's a reason why some meet and greet packages cost thousands of dollars.

However, what a lot of fans tend to forget is that celebrities are human just like the rest of us, and meeting them doesn't always go as expected.

For some, it ends up being an unforgettable experience in the best way, but for others, their encounter with a celebrity turns out to be very awkward and sad.

There's a Reddit thread where people have shared their saddest celebrity encounters, and here are 10 of the top stories:

1. Betty White

Shortly after her stint on The Golden Girls ended, the actress published a book about her love for animals.

Despite being a recognizable actress, White wasn't nearly as popular as she is today, and it showed.

LifeAspire

According to joeb7474, her book signing at a mall in his area was a flop.

"It was right after the Golden Girls (and Golden Palace) had ended. Her career was not in the best place at the time," they wrote. "I was at the Beverly Center in Los Angeles and saw a poster promoting Betty White signing her latest book about how much she loves animals."

They continued, "I liked the Golden Girls so I thought I would swing by the bookstore to take a gander at Betty White. It was so sad. I'll always remember she was sitting alone at a big table with a stack of books in front of her. People were in the bookstore shopping but no one was buying her book or really acknowledging her. She just sat there, pen in hand, waiting. She would occasionally wipe off some imaginary dust to look busy."

2. Gene Simmons

A few years ago, the KISS frontman was nice enough to listen to an aspiring musician play a set, but once they got backstage his true colors showed.

Billboard

"My brother met Gene Simmons back stage at a show he was playing in," wrote the Reddit user. "Gene complimented my brother highly on his guitar playing but then said 'too bad you'll never make it' and just walked away."

Simmons turned out to be very wrong, as the Redditors brother now "makes enough money from music alone and travels all over playing with various bands and artists."

3. Muhammad Ali

Many people who don't live or deal with a person who has Parkinson's disease, don't truly understand just how severe and debilitating it can be.

Reddit user GretSeat was a huge fan of the legendary Muhammad Ali, so naturally when he came to the restaurant he was working at in Florida, "ran next-door to Books A Million to buy his biography King of the World and have him sign it."

But in the end, GretSeat said that meeting the late boxer will probably be the "saddest" celebrity encounter.

Deadspin

Ali and his wife left the restaurant, and as she was helping him into the car, GretSeat decided to ask for his autograph.

"I held out my hand and shook the hand of the greatest Boxer to ever live. The hand that knocked out Fraiser. That mighty right hook. I immediately started crying. (And tearing up right now). She said "don't cry, it's okay!" I had to explain that it's surreal to meet the famous 'Ali,'" he wrote.

He continued, "He took at least (no joke) 2 full minutes to sign his name. And it was at that point that it killed me. This was Cassius Clay. Muhammad Ali. The most charismatic, float like a butterfly sting like a bee, man in boxing history. And he was such a shell of his former self because of the Parkinson's. It was so heartbreaking. It really was."

4. Tom Cruise

Traveling can be really stressful, and when you're a celebrity who has to fly a lot for work, you'd do anything to make the process as smooth as possible.

All Tom Cruise wanted was for Reddit user Axcalibur to deliver his checked bag planeside, but when that didn't go as planned, he threw a fit.

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"One time Tom Cruise cussed me out because I wouldnt violate federal law and bring his checked bags to him planeside. Made him go to baggage claim like everyone else," wrote Axaclibur.

He was coming off the plane and was told to pick his bag up plane side. For whatever reason there was no planeside tag marking his bag as such, I explained to him the whole deal with it, he turned red frowned and stormed off mumbling curses under his breath."

"Tried to explain his bag would make it there before he did and the way my airport is shaped.....he had to go right by the carousel anyways."

5. Hulk Hogan

The wrestler looks huge on television, but apparently he's even bigger in person, and that literally "scared the piss out" of one of his fans.

Nerdopotamus

"I met Hulk Hogan when I was four (lateish 80s) at some wrestling thing in Dallas," wrote JoyceCarolOatmeal. "All I remember is that my dad got his attention as he was walking toward the ring, and when he came around he stuck out this GIANT hand and said 'Put it there, darlin'!'"

"I recognized him but he was scary, so I peed my pants and cried. I guess it's obvious now that he wanted a handshake or a high five or.... something? No idea. Anyway, scared the piss out of me. Dude is huge."

6. Evil Knievel

When a pair of seven-year-olds met their idol Evel Knievel in the 70s, they weren't expecting him to teach them a lesson about safety.

"I was a little kid in the 70s. Like pretty much every little boy, I thought Evel Knievel was a serious badass. When I was about 7, I was in the airport with my mom and her boyfriend and a friend of mine. My mother's boyfriend told us that Evel was in one of the lounges. He was sitting in a back corner, drinking a glass of some kind of booze and engulfed in a cloud of cigarette smoke," wrote user msjtx.

The boys asked for an autograph, and although he was "obviously drunk," Knievel still signed a couple of napkins for them, but it came with a painful price.

massolutions.biz

"...He looked at us and said, 'before I give you these, I'm going to teach you something.' My friend at I looked at each other, totally starstruck and grinning like idiots."

At first, he tapped the boys on their arms, then asked them if that hurt. When they replied with a no, he poked them "lightly in the chest," and once again asked "does that hurt?" The boys "said no in unison," but it didn't just end there.

"Then he made fists out of both hands with the middle knuckle sticking out and brought them down sharply and simultaneously, protruding knuckle first, onto both of our head," msjtx continued. "'Does that hurt?' he asked. Neither of us could really answer, I was holding back tears from the pain. He waited a few seconds and said: 'that's why you wear a safety helmet,' and handed us the napkins."

7. Brad Pitt

The whole world knows that Brad Pitt is a ladies' man, but one Reddit user figured this out in the most disappointing way: Pitt prevented him from picking up a girl.

The Hollywood Reporter

"I was an extra in World War Z and I met this girl there and we were talking and all was great until one time Brad Pitt walks by," they wrote. [He] Was very friendly to her, and totally blanked me."

8. JFK Jr.

No matter how nervous you are when meeting a famous person, it's probably best that you work up the courage to ask them for an autograph yourself as one Reddit user quickly realized after an awkward encounter with JFK Jr.

Veterans Today

"Well, I once wanted to get Daryl Hannah's autograph for my friend who had been crushing on her since forever. I couldn't summon up my courage to approach her directly, so I just asked the dude sitting next to her. He put me off very politely," wrote the Reddit user.

I went back to my friends empty-handed and was complimentary of Mr. Nobody's manners. They told me I'd just asked JFK Jr for Daryl's autograph.

9. Rachel Weisz

Some people feel a lot of pressure when they meet a celebrity. They're unsure if they should let their excitement show or just act cool, calm, and collected.

One Reddit user, who was about 14 or 15 at the time, sat next to her "first girl crush" Rachel Weisz on a flight to Malta, but instead of "acting like another fawning fangirl," she decided not bring up the fact that she knew who the actress was.

Variety

Turns out, that was the wrong decision.

"I never let on that I knew who she was and just chatted happily with her as the conversation dwindled and she became more sullen and withdrawn," recalled the Reddit user. "Finally she snapped at me about something (I can't even remember what I said or what she said in response, but it was clearly in a irritated tone) and I immediately sat back and went silent."

After Weisz got up to use the restroom, her nanny, who was sitting across the aisle, explained why The Mummy star suddenly snapped.

"...Her nanny leaned over and said simply and quietly 'She gets upset if you don't acknowledge who she is.' I tried to continue talking to the nanny but she turned back to the little boy and acted like she had never said anything at all."

10. Chris Rock

It really isn't a big secret, but in case you weren't aware, celebrities always get preferential treatment.

This is exactly why one Redditor still holds a grudge against comedian Chris Rock.

Flavorwire
"I had waited an hour and a half in line for a ride at Great Adventure. Was in the front seat line so the wait was even longer," wrote anotherredditvirgin. "Finally, I was next in line--watched gleefully as my train pulled in. And Chris Rock and his family come walking up from the exit and are given my spot, without waiting at all. I was both sad and mad and have held a grudge against him ever since."

11. Christian Bale

It's possible that The Dark Knight actor was just in character for a movie he was shooting at the time of this bizarre encounter, but if he wasn't, we have so many questions.

Wealthy Gorilla

Here's what happened:

"Served Christian Bale a latte at work, he went and stood facing the wall, like a child’s punishment until his coffee was ready. People were more bemused by his behavior, thus giving him slightly more attention."

12. Amanda Seyfried and Tom Hanks

Unless you're at an event, it's rare that you get to meet two celebrities at once, but that's exactly what happened to this Reddit user's brother while at a bar in LA.

Now, he has a story that he will never forget.

"My older brother was at a bar in LA during the night of one of the huge award shows. When he was reaching for his beer Amanda Seyfried (Karan in Mean Girls) took it and walked out of the bar without looking back. The guy next to him patted him on the back and offered a drink on him. It was Tom Hanks. What a class act."

13. Bill Murray

Apparently, Seyfried isn't the only one who goes around stealing from other people.

Bill Murray is a bit of a prankster, but I'm not so sure what he did to this Reddit user's friend was all that funny.

1A
"A friend of mine always tells the story of his encounter with Bill Murray," they wrote. "Whilst walking home from a near-by Dominoes pizza back to the house, Bill Murray comes up behind my friend, takes the pizza and runs away with it shouting “No one’s going to believe you!”

[H/T: Reddit]

Do you or anyone you know have a celebrity encounter story? Share it in the comments!

For more celebrity stories, check out:

13 Celebrities Whose Hygiene Habits Are Honestly Revolting

13 Celebrities Who Dumped Their Partners In Insanely Rude Ways

13 Celebrities Who Fell In Love With Their Lucky Fans

Awa has been writing for Shared for 3 years. She is a serial snacker who unapologetically loves celebrity gossip. Drop her a line at awa@shared.com.