Amy Foster
March 04, 2013 6:00 am

Do you have “meet a movie star” on your bucket list? Do you ever fantasize that you will find yourself suddenly sitting next to Ryan Gosling at a coffee shop, or that Sandy Bullock will stop you on the street and ask where you got your shoes? We do. Except, we took it one step further and created a pretend manor house where all of our faves actually work for us. It’s not that we want them to be subservient in any way; rather, we like the idea that they have to be around. Like, their job is to make movies (or dresses) and hang out with us.  I know, it’s a little sad, yet it’s also fairly surprising how many of you join us every week at the Heatley Cliff to see what our chef, Michael Fassbender, has prepared for tea.

Truthfully, because of my work and my family, I have met a fair number of “stars” and I have seen many more out and about, so I do know what I am talking about here. The first thing you have to keep in mind is that you need two things: chutzpah and opportunity. This means that once I supply suggestions with the opportunity, you have to extend yourself (in the politest way possible) and go for it. You will feel like a dork. You must accept that there will be more than a little part of you that is totally mortified beyond measure. However, if you are respectful and brief, the person you are meeting will no doubt return your energy. If the star is an assh**e and makes you feel like an even bigger one, then so what? You have the satisfaction of knowing you are a brave soul who put themselves out there and they are a miserable sod who isn’t classy enough to be nice to a person that helped make their career possible in the first place. Not that it’s ever happened to me…

Now, there may be a film or TV show shooting in your (small) town. Projects do shoot on location. In this case, I would suggest getting in touch with the production company to see if they are hiring extras. BUT, if you really want to meet a star, you have to be willing to spend some time in LA or NY. I will warn you, though – NY is a much harder route because there are SO many places to go there. Also, because people walk a lot more there, you might see a celebrity on on the street and stopping them might prove to be awkward as they are actually trying to get somewhere and less inclined to have a casual chit chat (especially if it’s freezing).

My sister Erin – who has gone to extremes to get Ryan Gosling’s attention, by the way – had a few ideas on this front. Erin lives in LA and runs with a pretty jazzy set. I’m not sure how much cooler Erin is than me, but she is definitely younger and has less children (zero) to get in the way of her socializing. She suggests that if you are in NY, you go to the Bowery, which is a hotel and also a bar/restaurant. “They will let you hang out there during the day if you are a nobody. Just keep ordering coffee and refuse to leave. Also, look at your phone a lot until the fabulous people start rolling in.”

In LA, Erin suggests that you get a manicure in Beverly Hills during the middle of the day when real people are at work. In my mind, this is a great option – you could be seated right next to someone famous and it wouldn’t be THAT weird to say hi. She also thinks that if there is any way you can get friendly with someone who has a membership to the Soho Club, you should do so. The Soho Club in West LA is a total hangout for celebs. To take this one step further, she feels like “riding the elevator up and down as many times as possible on a Friday night” is a slightly claustrophobic but sure fire way to see a star.

For my own personal experience, I would say that Malibu is the greatest place for star gazing. Malibu, which is about half an hour away from LA proper and on the beach, is a very small, very dense community. Conservatively, I would say that 1 in every 5 people you see there are in the entertainment business. So, get there on a weekend and check out the Malibu Country Mart and Malibu Lumber Yard (both are shopping destinations) and be prepared to see the mega celebs. Malibu is very casual and even though the stars may be wearing TONS of make up, they won’t look like they are. So practice your nonchalant stare as you attempt to figure out who they might be. Also in Malibu is the very famous restaurant Nobu. If you can score a reservation on a weekend at Nobu, you are almost guaranteed to catch a glimpse of a famous person.

If you are a sporty-type person, then put on your Lululemon pants, ideal for highlighting your rear because of the “butt bra” aspect, and take a hike in Runyan Canyon. It might look a little like a pilgrimage to Our Lady Of The Super Skinny, but don’t let that deter you. For every annoyingly thin supermodel taking a hike, there is a sweaty actor with no shirt on. You might also want to think about taking a class at Tracey Anderson. If it doesn’t kill you, you might be able to feel the burn beside a famous person.

In town, there is the Ivy on Robertson where celebs tip off the paps and go to get photographed. It’s a nice enough restaurant, but aside from the chopped salad, I don’t see what all the fuss is about. For a more casual scene, try Urth Cafe or brunch at the counter of the Beverly Hills hotel.

But, if you want an absolute, sure fire, 100% way to meet a movie star, then you must travel all the way to Toronto, Ontario. Yes my friends, it’s hard to believe that Canada might be the answer to any of your problems, but my home and native land is the ticket. However, you must go there at a certain time, to a certain area. This year its Sept 5 – 15th and the area is a very small few blocks downtown called Yorkville. Have you figured it out yet? Its the Toronto International Film Festival! Honestly, walking within a one block radius of the Four Seasons Hotel during the festival is like being on a film set. It’s crazy. You will never see more celebs (all clumped together!) just hanging out than you will here.

Okay, well, please use this information responsibly and happy hunting!

Featured image via ShutterStock

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