Meeting the Stars--Celebrity Encounters I've Had

F. Murray Abraham--a fine gentleman

Michael Biehn--He forgot his ID

Joe Turkel--A friendly guy with a spooky face

Meeting the stars in person

Everyone probably has their stories about celebrity encounters. I did a hub a few months back about my meeting with a pre-famous Angelina Jolie. Well, I've got a few other stories about celebrity encounters that I thought were amusing so I thought I'd share them.

I used to work at the AAA motor club and they had a lot of celebrity clients who would come in from time-to-time about car insurance or international driving permits or whatever else they might need. So I got to meet a few of them. Here are a few anecdotes.

F. Murray Abraham

This was one of the nicest celebrities I met. He was a gentlemen and a regular down-to-earth guy. He was friendly and approachable during his visit. He ended up talking to the AAA travel agent about his wife's home made tomato sauce. He was so happy with the job the travel agent did that he promised to bring him a can. Sure enough, he stopped by personally a few days later to drop off the can of tomato sauce to the agent. He was a very nice guy.

Michael Biehn:

If the name isn't familiar, Michael Biehn played the time-traveling hero Reece in The Terminator. He played the crazy Johnny Ringo in Tombstone. He was also in Aliens and the Abyss. He came in for some insurance but he didn't have the proper two forms of ID he needed to get some. He told the travel agent, "But I'm a famous actor! Everyone knows me!" Then he went around the room looking for people who recognized him to prove who he was. I vouched for him.

Joe Turkel:

Another unfamiliar name? He is probably best known for playing Dr. Tyrell in Bladerunner. He was also the bartender in the Shining. I was in the lobby of the building when he went by and I thought I recognized him, so I said, "Excuse me, but were you ever a movie actor?" He said, "Yes, and I still am, young man." I told him I recognized his face. "From which picture" he asked. I said "Bladerunner" and he replied, "Ah! Dr. Tyrell. I enjoyed making that film." He talked to me for about a minute and then had to run. A very nice guy.

David Patrick Kelly:

Before I tell this story, let me preface by saying I only met him the one time and its entirely possible I just caught him on a bad day. This may not be typical behavior for him. (Or maybe it is.) Having said that, here's the story: David Patrick Kelly is a little guy known for playing villains. He's best known as the psycho gang member from the film The Warriors, who yells "Warriors! Come out to Pla-ay!" He's also been in 48 Hours, Commando, the Crow and Dreamscape. He came into the AAA to attend to something. While he was in the waiting room, he sat in the corner, talking on the phone and trying to keep his face hidden. Some people seemed to recognize him but since he was on the phone, no one approached him. When he was called for his turn, he sat at the desk and never smiled: he barely even talked. When he was walking out, I said to him, "Say, aren't you the actor from the Warriors?" Kelly mumbled "Uh-huh" and walked quickly past me, without ever looking directly at me. (Maybe he was having a bad day.)

Ethan Hawke, Robert Sean Leonard and Steve Zahn:

I met these three while I was working at the Playwrites Horizon theater in NY. They were in a show there. Robert Sean Leonard (Who plays Dr. Wilson on House MD) was very nice and pleasant. Hawke was basically polite but seemed a bit full of himself and liked to glad-hand with the rest of the cast. He was always fashionably late and invariably made a big entrance. Zahn refused to talk to me. (Callista Flockhart of Ally McBeal was there, too, but I didn't speak to her.)

I've seen others too, but had very little interaction with them. When I was an intern at Women's Wear Daily magazine, I saw Jerri Hall (the former Mrs. Jagger) but peons like me couldn't get too close to her. Paul Schaffer (from the David Lettermen show) came into the AAA once but nothing of note happened.

So those are my celebrity stories. F. Murray Abraham, Joe Turkle and Robert Sean Leonard were the nicest ones. Zahn was a jerk (And possibly Kelly, too, but I can't be sure.) Hawke was a bit pompous but he was Okay. Biehn seemed okay, too.


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Comments 11 comments

Cogerson profile image

Cogerson 5 years ago from Virginia

Great stories...I imagine living in New York ...your chances of meeting a celebrity are much higher than people like me that live in Virginia. Yes I survived the earthquake. I have gotten a chance to met a few celebrities myself though...Catfish Hunter, Kim Basinger/Alec Baldwin they were married and happy, Ernest Borgnie and Richard Dreyfuss...I got a kick when they both appeared in RED.

My favorite story you wrote about was vouching for Michael Biehn....that had to be kinda cool. Surprised Zahn was that way...Thanks for sharing these great stories.

Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi Cogerson; Glad you got through the quake Okay. It must have been tense for a while. We barely felt it here in New York.

I would have liked to have met a young Kim Basinger.She was gorgeous!

Thanks, as always, for reading.

Take care,


Paradise7 profile image

Paradise7 5 years ago from Upstate New York

I can see these stories are true to the characters of the actors themselves. I like Ethan Hawke as an actor; I could see him being sort of self-conscious as a person.

Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi Paradise; Maybe Ethan Hawke is a bit self-conscious, which may be why he feels the need to be the center of attention all the time.

Thanks for reading,


FatFreddysCat profile image

FatFreddysCat 5 years ago from The Garden State

Cool stories, Robwrite. I've met quite a few celebrities in my time too (mostly musicians, from going to concerts/meet & greets/release parties/etc.). The only actors I've met have been Adam "Batman" West and Richard "Battlestar Galactica" Hatch (both of whom were very nice and personable). In fact the only out-and-out jerk I've met was Ace Frehley of KISS, whom I encountered at a convention a couple of years before the KISS reunion.

Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi FFC; I once saw Adam West at an autograph signing at Comic-Con but I didn't have any contact with him. I've heard varying accounts about him. I've heard he's nice and also that he can be difficult. I'm not sure which is true.

Too bad about Frehley being a jerk. Oh well, what can you do?

Thanks for reading,


FatFreddysCat profile image

FatFreddysCat 5 years ago from The Garden State

I've actually met Adam West twice and he was very cool both times. Coincidentally, the 2nd time I met him also happened to be the same day I met Ace Frehley (they were both guests at a sci-fi/rock & roll collectibles convention I attended.) Ace obviously didn't want to be there, he didn't say hi to anyone, didn't shake hands, wouldn't even LOOK at the fans, he just signed whatever you put in front of him and you went on your way.

Adam West, however, was very cool and I will never forget this - my brother asked him "So have you met Ace Frehley over there? What did you think of him?" and his reply was (in that stone cold serious "Batman" voice, mind you) "I don't know... is he OK? I mean, is he all right in the head?" We laughed and said "Yeah, that's Space Ace for you" and Adam replied, "Is THAT what they call him? Good Lord."

My brother and I still laugh at that memory to this day. Adam West will always be OK in our book. :)

Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Funny story. I can hear him saying it in that Batman voice.

FatFreddysCat profile image

FatFreddysCat 5 years ago from The Garden State

Even funnier, a guy who brought a guitar for Ace Frehley to sign got chased away from the table by Ace's manager (the manager made a BIG stink about it too - "get outta here, he's not signing that thing") so he took it over to Adam West's table and had HIM sign it. Then he held it up and yelled over to Ace's table, "HEY ACE - who needs you? I got BATMAN on this thing!" and gave him the finger. I was dyin'.

Rachelle Williams profile image

Rachelle Williams 5 years ago from Tempe, AZ


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

I think so too Rachelle.


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