A little girl in Israel I met during the conversion process emailed me this week to ask me if I’ve ever met anyone famous living in New York. In Israel, we used to walk to Blockbuster together and then watch films together. During our movie fast around The Three Weeks, we commiserated together over our hunger pains.
In high school, Jewish fashion designer Kenneth Cole came to my Fashion Illustration class and sat down and chatted with me personally about my artwork. He oohed and aahed over my work and told me, “You draw better than I ever could.”
In college, I did get to meet famous author Mary Higgins Clark and I got an autograph from Jewish actor Mark Feuerstein (of the USA TV show “Royal Pains”) just after “What Women Want” came out.
I’ve also run into Israeli-American actress Natalie Portman and actor Dustin Hoffman and a few other folk around the city. I’ve taken planes to and from Los Angeles with actresses Alyssa Milano (of “Charmed”) and actress Rena Sofer, who is quite stunning in person and whose father is an Orthodox rabbi.
I’ve also had the opportunity to hang out with Orthodox rapper, Y-Love aka Yitz Jordan after we spoke on a Jews of color panel filmed by the Jewish Channel. I could hang out with him all day. He’s just awesome! And cute!
I met actor (and actress Angelina Jolie’s father) Jon Voight at a Shabbat meal in Riverdale. No joke. He sat next to me and at one point, offered to cut my food when he noticed I was having difficulty. Angelina Jolie’s father cut my food. Yes. Really. He invited me and my husband to a movie premiere but we were going to spend Pesach in Los Angeles. Sigh!
Probably in Los Angeles, I’ve seen tons of actors I did or did not recognize. It seemed everyone there was somehow or another related to “the business.”
But it’s not really a big deal unless you really love the person’s body of work and had meaningful personal interaction with them. When I was 10, wishing I’d someday work at Entertainment Weekly (I turned down a job there after college because I couldn’t support myself and my recently kidnapped sister on the salary offered), I would have passed out if I’d met a celebrity.
In my preteen and teen years, I probably would have giggled and screamed uncontrollably. Now, if I can, I just say “Hello” or let them go about their merry way since I know they are probably hoping nobody recognizes them. My sister ran into Bradley Cooper and when he realized she’d recognized him, he literally ran the other way.
Monday, I spotted actors Bruce Willis (gorgeous! love the bald head!) and Adam Brody standing outside the movie premiere of “Cop Out” as a fellow blogger and I exited the movie theater where it was being held. We’d just seen “Up in the Air” and were starry-eyed over George Clooney but not too starry-eyed we couldn’t get excited about Bruce Willis.