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Old March 20 2013, 11:31 PM   #1
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Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Since we've delved fairly deeply into the negative side of meeting actors at conventions, I thought it might be nice to balance things out by everyone sharing their best experiences.

In no specific order, my best experiences have been...

Tim Russ - Met him while Voyager had just gone on hiatus from season 6. He was delightful. Warm, personable, friendly, energized to be there. He had a little skit he did where he had fans join him on stage to read the different parts, and I got picked. I was 15 at the time, but I'm quite tall and was then (I was about 6"7 then) and initially picked to be the Klingon, but he switched me to be a Starfleet guy (which turned out better cause I had a funny line then). After word, he signed an extra cast photo for me and then had Garrett Wang do the same, which is why all these years later I've got a complete season 6 (Jeri Ryan years) and a season 3 absent only Lien (Kes). He also slipped up and let me keep the script to his skit, which I still have and have never let anyone else see, as I mentioned this in an e-mail to his fan-club, which at the time was run by his sister Angela, and she swore me to secrecy.

Avery Brooks - Avery has a great energy. He's warm and enjoys his fans. I've only ever seen him be less-than-awesome once, and on that occasion he simply seemed over-shadowed by the other four captains rather than unhappy or distant - rather he just seemed to be letting the others do their thing rather than try to elbow them for some spotlight. Avery is so smart and so deep, you can understand why he's a professor at Rutgers. The second time I met him, he stopped to ask to shake my hand - normally the fan has to ask for such. That's the kind of guy Avery is in my experiences with him.

Robbie McNeil - met him along side Bob Picardo, Roxann Dawson and Ethan Phillips in the summer of 2000, no long after I'd met Tim Russ. They where just back in production of season 7, I believe. Well the convention itself was interesting - as in Chinese interesting ("may you live in interesting times") - the 2000 RNC was happening at the same time, same city (Philly) and some delegates where staying at our hotel. Well I can't recall now if it was Friday or Saturday, but we all ended up being evacuated because the governor of Illinois had sent his delegates alarm clocks in the mail. Actual alarm clocks. That ticked. And so ticking package to politicos = bomb threat. Robbie, Armin Shimmerman and Rene Auberjonis where the only ones there at the time, and Robbie and Armin really went above and beyond. They held court, posed for photos with everyone, and really just made the whole ordeal tolerable and even fun. This was in juxtaposition to Rene, who had just done a role in "The Patriot" with Mel Gibson and newcomer Heath Ledger a month earlier, and stood off to the side surrounded by an entourage of convention organizers keeping us guests away from him

Alexander Siddig - told some of the best stories I'd ever heard, ones that stick in my mind a decade+ later. Though some may not have been appropriate or appealed to everyone's sense of humor, lol.

J.G. Hertzler + Bob O'Reilly - if you've ever seen them at a convention, you know what fun they are. They've taken to showing up in make-up and costume at times. They're just fun and a good duo and leave to glad to have met them.

Jimmy Doohan - What a great man. You should all read up on Jimmy, especially if you can find his auto-bio "Beam me up, Scotty!". Anywhom, he was just a gem. Warm, friendly, nice, signed an extra thing for me (when I was a teenager, which is when I met the lions share of the actors, I could easily get away with that - acquiring an extra autograph. Don't know why!). Told great, funny stories. Did so much for his fans. I've never heard anything negative said about Jimmy. Not once, ever.

Alice Krige - I've never met her, but a friend of mine did, and the fact that I have some truly epically-inscribed autographs from her is a testament to how cool she is. She's one of the very few people I've not met that I'd climb mountains to. Sadly, she hasn't done a con in my area since 1998.

Nana Visitor - She really loves Kira, and it shows. The way she talks about her, it's like she exists somewhere else and yet is part of her, too. It's a unique way that isn't at all odd like it may sound. Always has good stories, and is just a friendly presence.

Kate Mulgrew - Always lively, always thought provoking, always honest. She gets into politics which isn't always appreciated by those who don't agree with her, but she's the captain gods damnit, she's entitled! lol. And most Trekkies tend to fall into the spectrum of agreeing with her, so it's rarely an issue.
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Old March 20 2013, 11:46 PM   #2
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

I posted a lot in the other thread, so I'll just say that I've met many, many actors over the years of attending conventions. Almost all have been at least decent. Many have been very good. And a few have been truly exceptional:

Marina Sirtis: probably my favorite. She is so different than her character. Sirtis is loud, obnoxious, opinionated, and brutally honest. I had a great talk with her one time about Stuart Baird and the directing on Nemesis. She did not hold back! And, she looks great for ....57 years old! I couldn't believe that.

George Takei: we met him and Brad in San Francisco. They were a real delight. George clearly loves the fans, the attention, etc. Very gregarious, funny, and engaging.

Kate Mulgrew: she is one of those people that just exude energy. You can feel it radiating off of her. She is a star! Great with the fans. A big hugger. It was a real thrill for me to meet her.

Gates McFadden: she will always have a place in my heart after her encounter with my daughter many years ago. I've told that story so many times I won't bore you with it again. Suffice to say, she'll always be on my list of favorites.

Nana Visitor: another one who is nothing like her character. She is a total space cadet! Hilarious, sort of lost in space all the time. Very charming and genuine. Told her Creation escort to "get lost" and sat down to breakfast with us. Truly a charming, lovely woman.
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Old March 21 2013, 06:12 AM   #3
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Frontier wrote: View Post
Nana Visitor - She really loves Kira, and it shows. The way she talks about her, it's like she exists somewhere else and yet is part of her, too. It's a unique way that isn't at all odd like it may sound. Always has good stories, and is just a friendly presence.
Never met her, but I totally get this. Whenever she get going about Kira in docs or interviews or what not, her face just lights up in a way I don't think I've seen from any other Trek cast member.
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Old March 21 2013, 08:04 AM   #4
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

I said the first part of this in another thread, but here it is anyway. My favorite guest had to be Armin Shimmerman. The man was delightfully full of it, and I loved it. He was very friendly, very personable. We talked for a few seconds while he signed his autograph. He asked me where I was from, how I liked Chicago, and so on. When my friend asked him for a picture, the rep said no, that it would cost $80, to which Armin turned to him and said "He can take a picture of me. I don't have a problem with it", at which point he looks back to my friend and says "Now, young man, you can take a picture of me, but I can't look at the camera, and you can't be in the picture, okay?", so as we turned away, Armin looked over to the side, and my friend snapped a great shot. Armin winked at us as we left.

He's just a true gem. You can tell he loves the fans.

J.G. Hertzler and Bob O' Reilly. THOSE guys could make money just going to conventions as a comedy team. They're non-stop fun, and it's hilarious, because J.G. Hertzler is every bit as wild as his General Martok, while Bob O'Reilly was way more soft spoken outside of his Gowron character. It was fun. Hell, when J.G. entered the building, I heard his voice down the hall and knew who it was right away. On the other hand, I sat right next to Bob O'Reilly, in the hotel bar, talking to him for half an hour before I realized it was him. He just seemed like a really older Star Trek fan visiting the convention!

Max Grodenchik was awesome. He was polite, friendly, cracking jokes with fans. Totally at ease with us.

Jeffrey Combs was a laugh riot. When we had the ice cream social, the actors had to rotate from table to table every few minutes, and speak with the people at that table. We got so into talking about books and our favorite hard sci-fi authors, that when the announcer called out "Okay, fellas time to move on to the next group", he called back "Oh come ON! This was just getting good!", then he looked at us and whispered, "I'm coming back!" and scurried off to the next table.

Marc Alaimo was the surprise. Having met him earlier that day, he had been rather prickly toward a friend (and for good reason!), so I didn't know what to expect. Well, my friend and I see him perform the Shakespeare sonnets, and later on, at the same ice cream social, we meet him. Well, I thanked him for his performance from earlier that evening, and that I had I had fun because I had never seen Shakespeare performed live on stage, and he was almost taken aback. He said that everyone should see Shakespeare performed by a well honed troupe at least once in their lifetimes. He went on and on, gushing about theatrical productions of which I should take note (and see), and his zeal was just wonderful. Just a great guy. That man knows his stuff, and he's very good at it.

The rest of the guests were very polite, and greeted us warmly, but the ones I listed above, they stand out more than anything. I was so tickled to meet some of my favorite cast members, and they were just wonderful. Even 2 1/2 years later, it warms me to think about it, and I can't help smiling.

Oh, and for the record, Casey Biggs is a very good guitar player.

My one regret is that Leonard Nimoy couldn't be there due to a medical emergency. I don't fault him for it, of course, but it's likely the only chance I had to see him in person, and while I have his autograph, it's just not the same.
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Old March 21 2013, 10:24 PM   #5
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Having gone to roughly three conventions per year since 2007 at the same hotel, I've come to realize that the nostalgia cons have the best merchandise, the horror cons have the best guests with choice character actors who are permitted to tackle all genres besides horror, and the sci-fi cons by far have the finest forums.

My top favorite performers I've encountered make a four-way tie: Lance Henriksen, Janet Leigh, James Doohan and Angela Cartwright.
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Old March 21 2013, 11:27 PM   #6
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Connor Trinneer

He's gracious and respectful with his fans.

A very close second, Robert Picardo.
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Old March 22 2013, 07:35 PM   #7
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Fortunately, my list of good experiences would far outweigh my negative ones.

Some of those folks who were outstanding above the rest:

Jonathan Frakes (great with my daughter)
George Takai
Walter Keonig
Marina Sirtis
Wil Weaton
LaVar Burton
Ciroc Lofton
Armin Shimerman
and one of the all time best:
Rick Sternbach. The way he played with my daughter and was so friendly to her, I'd give the man a kidney if he asked.
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Old March 23 2013, 09:47 PM   #8
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Aw shucks, Mickey. Thanks.

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Old March 24 2013, 12:10 AM   #9
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

George Takei - easily the nicest of the ST stars

Avery Brooks - I was so impressed that he offered his hand to shake first and it wasn't a token shake. Asked where I was from and when I mentioned Mississippi, he started talking about relatives he has there. One of the nicest, and I even think one of the best ST actors. He makes it look effortless.

Went to a convention a few years ago in Jackson, MS. It was not very well promoted, considering the number of ST guests attending (maybe 200 attendees, tops). Met John Billingsley and Dominic Keating. They were super nice, considering the low crowd. Maybe they liked being in a smaller venue.

Chase Masterson really seems to appreciate her fans. Very nice and super sexy! Got some great pics with her.

Gary Graham also seemed like a very mellow dude. When I got his autograph, we joked back and forth about some of the guests surrounding his table (like Lorenzo Lamas). Seemed like someone you could just chill out with.
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Old March 24 2013, 04:05 AM   #10
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Had a blast with Gary Lockwood years ago. A very excited fan asked why Kirk could kill Mitchell with a rock, when he had all those powers. Lockwood's response was the quote I have at the bottom.
But he didn't say it in a mean way. He was clearly having fun.
I mentioned this to him years later, and we had a good laugh.
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Old March 24 2013, 04:23 AM   #11
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

Original Series: George Takei - very friendly and nice; Nichelle Nichols; James Doohan; Robin Curtis. All seemed to enjoy interacting with the fans.

TNG: Jonathan Frakes -I didn't meet him personally, but he was at our convention. Even though the crowd was very small, he went all over the room and interacted with various people and made it seem like we were a huge crowd honoring him. Classy guy.

DS9: Casey Biggs, Armin Shimerman, Chase Masterson, Nana Visitor.

Voy:

Ent: Connor Trinneer, Anthony Montgomery, Dominic Keating. Very fan friendly and fun.

I've seen all but Majel Barrett from the original series; all but Dorn, Sirtis, Spiner and Wheaton from TNG; all but Auberjonois, Siddig and Meaney from DS9, only five of ten from VOY and all but Bakula and Park from ENT.
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Old March 25 2013, 05:05 PM   #12
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

I've met way too many of the actors to list here, but my absolute favorite experiences were from Max Grodenchik and Robin Curtis. Robin's story, I'll keep to myself except to say she is made of 100% pure awesome. Max, though ...

I don't think I'll ever forget being at the con with Max down in Kansas City. There was a dinner and a show, and several of the guests walked around to the tables to schmooze. He was so drunk he fell into me. I had to hold him up so he wouldn't fall to the floor. He wanted to to on to the next table, and I propped him up. For the next hour, I was like his right arm, until he had sobered up enough to carry on himself.

I thought he would surely be too drunk to remember any part of it, but a year or two later, I was at Dragon*Con and he was a guest. I went to the awards dinner, where he was the opening act. While singing from the stage, he recognized me, grabbed the mic, and came over to the table I was at. He paused in his singing, said "Hey man, thanks again for KC. Good to see you again!" then saunted right back onto the stage. The others at the table just stared at me.
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Old March 25 2013, 06:06 PM   #13
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

I've met a few but Mark Alaimo remains my favorite if only because a bunch of us met him (and Casey Biggs) in a hotel bar and spent the evening eating, getting drunk and playing darts.

He was an awesome drunk (okay, half-drunk). Voluble, funny, and extremely open about DS9. But much of what he said remains in my brain and unshared (perhaps because I know he was intoxicated).

Casey Biggs was a really interesting person. Very well-traveled, educated and curious about the fans around him. I wouldn't trade that evening for a world of gold or any amount of precious gems.

I'd like to meet the Shatman some time. Haven't had the opportunity yet, unfortunately.
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Old March 25 2013, 10:33 PM   #14
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

foxhot wrote: View Post
...Lance Henriksen...
Never been to a con, but have met. Super super nice, very un-actory and v. smart. Ditto Frances McDormand. Great dancer too

I can believe all the things I've read about Visitor, Brooks, etc and Sirtis always comes across as a real riot!
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Old March 26 2013, 11:28 PM   #15
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Re: Convention Circuit - Most Favorite Person You've Met?

One person I forgot to mention is Michael Aron (Jack London in TNG's Time's Arrow).

We met him in San Francisco last year and he was a really cool guy. Very down to Earth, easy to talk to. He owns a motorcycle shop in San Rafael, and also runs an agency that helps non-profits with media development.

He had lots of good things to say about the show, and the people he worked with. He's the kind of guy you could just sit and have a beer with.
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