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17 Wild Celebrity Encounters From "Normal" People Who Didn't Even Realize The Other Person Was Famous
Imagine Henry Winkler coming up to your car and explaining why there's a traffic jam.by Lauren Garafano
About a month ago, BuzzFeed shared a bunch of real-life celebrity encounters from people who didn't even know they were meeting someone famous.
BuzzFeed / Getty Images / Via buzzfeed.com
Then, a ton of BuzzFeed Community users sent in their own wild celebrity encounter stories, and trust me, they're just as wild. So without further ado, here are those stories:
1. "My mom just casually became pool buddies with Pitbull when she was living in LA..."
"She had absolutely no clue who he was and even asked him one day what he did for a living. He told her he was a rapper and went by Pitbull, and she said she would try to check out his music because she hadn’t heard of him. Later, on the phone, she asked me if I’d ever heard of him. She would call him Armando and say he was very sweet and a gentleman."
Donald Kravitz / Getty Images
2. "Years ago, they were filming the Bridges Restaurant scene for Mrs. Doubtfire in my town..."
"But there wasn’t much to see because it was filmed indoors and the outside had barricades set up. However, an elderly woman came out and chatted with the people who were at the barricades trying to get a look at someone famous. The elderly woman was Robin Williams in full Mrs. Doubtfire makeup."
Archive Photos / Getty Images
3. "About a month ago, I pulled into a parking structure only to immediately encounter a nasty traffic jam..."
"After 15 minutes of going nowhere, I saw a familiar-looking gentleman stopping at the window of each car. He got to me and explained a car had rolled into the aisle, blocking both directions. The driver was nowhere to be found and not much could be done, but he wanted to let people know what was going on to try and ease the frustration. After explaining to the remaining drivers behind me, the kind fellow headed inside. By the time Henry Winkler finished whatever business he had there, a group of us had managed to lift the offending Honda and move it enough to let cars pass. I hope we improved his day some fraction of as much as he did ours."
David Livingston / Getty Images
4. "My father taught at a private studio school in SoCal after he retired and told a story about a young student who walked in looking for a studio teacher..."
"He asked the young lady to sit down, then she asked him if he knew who she was. He said he didn’t. She said, “I'm Lizzie McGuire.” My father said it was nice to meet Lizzie and asked her again to sit down. Then, she replied that her name was Hilary, to which my father claimed he said, “Is your name Lizzie or Hilary? Do you know?“ Hilary got up and left, and didn’t come back. This story is from a man who knew nothing of popular culture at the time."
Gregg Deguire / WireImage
5. "Around 2000, my mom was selling at a flea market and thought she recognized this cute, young blonde woman who was clearly trying to stay incognito while browsing the booth..."
"Mom thought she'd come up with the solution and asked, 'Do I know you from somewhere?' The woman smiled and adorably did the 'shhh' finger to her lips, but Mom had no chill and asked, 'Are you Tracey Gold from Growing Pains?' The woman responded, 'Uh, no, I'm Reese.' As in Reese Witherspoon, right when her fame was exploding. My mom was about 10 years out of date when it came to cute pop culture blondes."
Frank Trapper / Corbis via Getty Images
6. "So I walked up to this dude at the showers at the beach and he said, 'Hey, kid, can you turn on the water for me...'"
"I was a little confused but did so anyway and then walked away. I walk over to where my cousins are talking and tell them what happened and how it was kind of creepy. My cousin just replied, 'Creepy?! That was Justin Bieber!'"
Medianews Group / MediaNews Group via Getty Images
7. "I met Stanley Tucci the other day..."
"I rang him up at my job and saw his name on the credit card and receipt, then quietly said, 'It was nice to meet you, by the way.' He said, 'It was nice to meet you too." And he left."
Juan Naharro Gimenez / Getty Images
8. "I was just having drinks with friends after work when this guy ran past me and almost knocked me over..."
"I yelled, 'HEY!' and then realized that it was Owen Wilson, who was making a VERY fast getaway on his bicycle with his dog following. No hard feelings!"
Samir Hussein / WireImage
9. "I sold Ian Somerhalder a bottle of wine at a Trader Joe’s in Atlanta..."
"I didn’t realize who he was until I checked his ID. I was embarrassed so I didn’t say anything. He was friendly, though!"
Frazer Harrison / Getty Images
10. "I was dropping my son off at a music camp in Southern California..."
"Most of the parents were younger than my wife and me. As I looked across a dirt road, I saw this older gentleman and paid no mind, initially. I turned to get something out of the back of the SUV and it hit me. I turned back and gave the guy a knowing nod. He smiled back and nodded. I told my son to get his mother because the man across the way is Warren Beatty. My son, in an overly obnoxiously loud voice, asked who Warren Beatty is. My wife came over and said that it wasn't him. So I pointed out a well-dressed woman walking toward him and said, 'I guess that isn’t Annette Benning.' My wife's jaw dropped. It was fun to just get the nod from Warren Beatty. None of the younger parents knew who he was."
Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images
11. "Years ago, my dad was playing at some music event and before the show started, he and his friend were walking around the venue to kill time..."
"This lady walked up to the two of them and asked where the stage was. My dad just casually gave her directions and continued on. Meanwhile, my dad’s friend was completely frozen. After the woman went on her way, my dad looked at his friend and said, 'You gotta let me know if any of these people here are important or something.' This knocked my dad’s friend out of his shock and he told my dad, 'Well, we can start with her. That was Marie Osmond.'"
San Francisco Chronicle / San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images
12. "It was near closing and I was working the customer service desk at Lowe's..."
"A man came up and said he bought a refrigerator. I asked for his phone number because that's how we invoice them. He smiles a kinda cute smile and said no. I asked if it was invoiced. He said no and gave me a slip of paper with the item number. I rang him out, then watched him leave, then watched my head cashier practically tackle him in the parking lot. I turned to the next customer and he was watching, too. He told me, in excitement, it was Troy Polamalu from the Pittsburgh Steelers."
Diamond Images / Diamond Images / Getty Images
13. "Probably close to 20 years ago, my grandparents were visiting family in LA and went out alone to do some shopping while everyone was at school/work..."
"My grandpa went into a small boutique by himself to look at gifts for my grandma. He held the door open for a woman and two men. He had a light conversation with the woman while he looked around. As he was leaving, one of the men pulled him aside and said something like, 'Thank you for not making a big deal out of being in here with her. We’ve been dodging paparazzi all day.' My grandpa was super confused but just said, 'Of course.' When he got to my grandma, he asked if she knew who the woman was who’d gone into the store after him. It was Angelina Jolie."
Ron Galella, Ltd. / Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
14. "I work in a bookstore in LA. One day, a man in his 60s comes in, wearing sunglasses, a baseball cap, and his face mask..."
"It was sunny outside so I thought nothing of what he was wearing or what he looked like. But the second he spoke, he couldn't disguise who he was. Anyway, I got to use Tom Hanks's credit card...to ring up his own purchase, but still!"
Steve Granitz / WireImage
15. "I was once at Baby Beach on Maui with my husband and our youngest two kids. I went to sit in the shade with our stuff and our 2-year-old son followed me up the sand..."
"He stopped, said something to another little boy that I couldn’t hear. With a grouchy look on his face, he picked up one of his sand toys. I am used to my curmudgeon larvae but felt bad. So I went over to meet his mom and tried to invite my son to play with her kid. I said, ‘It was nice to meet you. What’s your name?’ She said, ‘I’m Hilary,’ and chuckled to herself. I asked what her son’s name was; she told me he is Luca. Still not placing why she looked familiar, I asked my little grouch if he would like to come share his toys with Luca and make friends. Unfortunately, he did not make friends with Hilary Duff's son. The memory still makes me cringe."
Ari Perilstein 310-749-4416 / Ari Perilstein / Getty Images for Feld Entertainment, Inc.
16. "I was once taking a phone call booking for a new client..."
"I didn’t think anything of it even when she gave me her name and email address. Flash-forward to a couple of days later and this woman comes in for her appointment, and it’s just casually Princess Beatrice, granddaughter of the Queen of England. No big deal. She was really nice and every time she would come in, she would greet me, the receptionist, by name, and ask how I was."
Max Mumby / Getty Images
17. "One day, while shopping, I saw a Jeep I really liked..."
"As I pressed my nose up against the VERY darkly tinted driver's window (to see what the dash looked like), the window rolled down and I was standing there, almost nose to nose with Robin Williams. I stuttered out that I really liked his car and he invited me to sit in the passenger seat. He spent five minutes or so happily showing off all the features to me. I have no clear memories of anything I said so I'm pretty sure it was gibberish. It was an awesome experience and probably why I can't bring myself to watch his movies anymore."
Ethan Miller / Getty Images
Have YOU ever had a wild celebrity encounter where you didn't realize you met someone famous? Share your story in the comments!
Note: Some submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.
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