Discussion Time: Fangirling

This is a very random and very rambly post. Ever since I moved to Vancouver, I’ve been to several film/TV sets and it has mostly been fun. I always enjoy just hanging out there, because I love the atmosphere and let’s face it – I have literally nothing better to do. Other than most people, I don’t go there for the actors/actresses though, but rather because I want to make friends among the crew members. I am semi-successful at that so far, but there’s a thin line between being that fun random girl that shows up or the crazy fan who’s just everywhere. So, I have to be careful, but that’s a different topic.

I am a fangirl. That’s no secret and it’s nothing I am ashamed to admit either. However, I do have a complicated relationship with the whole fangirling experience sometimes. I am very passionate when it comes to TV shows and books. In fact, I think that exactly that passion makes this blog so very me. I will gladly scream about all my faves on Twitter or discuss ships for hours with my friends, whether they be online or non-virtual (see how I am not using the word “real” on purpose – online friends are just as real as the people you are physically able to see, folks!). That behaviour and love for fictional content is a big part of my personality and I would never try to hide or suppress it.

Having said all that, I act very differently when I am not online or in the presence of friends. For those of you who don’t know, I studied film and TV and I have worked in that area and would like to do so in the future as well. It’s great if you are enthusiastic about your work and passionate about the projects that are filmed in your area, which I obviously am, but there is just no room to be starstruck. There is a certain leeway if you are still young or just starting out, but in the end it always comes down to the fact that the superfans will most likely never get hired again. You sort of have to adjust how you act around these people and I’ve learned a lot about that in my previous jobs.

Does that mean I am not totally in awe of some actors/actresses/authors/bloggers/celebrities? No, of course not! There are so many people I would love to meet and be friends with, but that’s just not how it works. (Aside from the fact that meeting your idols can be really disappointing) Unless you are very fortunate and you meet one of your heroes in a bar or some other casual venue, befriending them is a very unlikely outcome. There are always exceptions and especially with some authors and bloggers, it is really easy to connect online. But when you are at a filming location, that’s a different story. You can make all the posters and write all the letters you want, but what kind of outcome do you expect from screaming their name across the street and snatching a blurry photo from afar?

I don’t want to say that it’s wrong to fangirl, whether it’s to the extreme or on the inside. The entire entertainment industry is based on these passionate people. They are the ones that make things happen, but sometimes I feel like there should be boundaries. I went to a set today (not saying which one, but it’s a popular teen show) and there were so many young girls following the actor every step of the way, he had to take a car to get across the street. That feels more than excessive to me and it’s sad, because when they don’t make such a big fuzz, the cast is far more likely to interact with them. My first instinct was to immediately distance myself from them, that I couldn’t be seen with a bunch of fangirls. They were really nice, but I could see how the crew got annoyed by them or felt like they made their job harder. I didn’t want to be that kind of person. So, all I did was take literally one step back from that group of girls and suddenly people thought I worked on set as security or as a PA. It was crazy to me how easily the perception of someone can change, depending on where on the street they are standing. Pedestrians came up and asked questions about the set, what was filming, if they were allowed to take pictures and claimed that they never had seen groupies like that in real life.

My heart is breaking when it comes to this topic, because I don’t want to distance myself from being a fangirl. I get how important a show/book/song/whatever-you-are-a-fan-of can be. I get that urge to share it with the world and to tell that person how much you love and appreciate their work, but in some cases it just gets out of hand and achieves the opposite of what was originally intended. They will close up and share less of their life. So, if you ever see someone you are a fan of, go and say “hi”, ask them for a picture and be flustered. By all means, that’s way better than following them on their every step and documenting their life one grainy picture  at a time.

I am not sure there was a real point to this post, but let me know how you feel about this topic in the comments below!