September 9, 2015 8:00 am
Updated: September 10, 2015 11:52 pm

TIFF etiquette rules: what to do when you spot a celebrity

Actor Robert Downey Jr., centre, signs autographs for fans after arriving on the red carpet for his new movie "The Judge" during the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto on Thursday, September 4, 2014. Starting Thursday, Toronto will host its 40th TIFF.


TORONTO — With dozens of stars about to descend on Toronto for TIFF 2015, it’s prime-time for celebrity sightings in the city. If you do spot a star, there are a few simple etiquette rules to keep in mind.

1. Don’t be creepy

First and foremost, remember that celebrities are people too.

“So I would say stalking…is probably not a good idea,” said ET Canada online producer and TIFF veteran Kate Morawetz.

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Neither is running into traffic and screaming a star’s name if you see one across the street. Even if it’s Jake Gyllenhaal.

READ MORE: Stars expected at TIFF 2015

And don’t try to be sneaky with your pictures if you see them at a bar. In a recent interview with DuJour magazine, Daniel Craig said that’s one of his biggest pet peeves. He much rather you come up to him and ask for a photo than lurk around all night snapping (not so) stealthy photos.

“Paparazzi kind of get a bad rap for a reason,” Morawetz pointed out.

2. Timing is everything 

So what are you supposed to do if you see your favourite actor at a restaurant?

“Best piece of advice from me if you’re in a restaurant and you see a celebrity: stay where you are, continue with your dinner,” advised Toronto restauranteur Nick Di Donato.

Morawetz agrees.

“Think about how you would feel in that situation if someone were to rush your table while you were out at say, a business meeting.  You don’t know what people are doing. And how awkward that would be!”

3.  Play it cool

Sometimes your restraint will be rewarded.

“They may just drop by and say hello because they’re wondering why you’re not paying attention to them,” Di Donato said.

While that may seem unlikely, he’s seen it happen before. He thinks what intrigues celebrities is someone who’s not all over them and treats them as if they were anyone else.

“That’s something they don’t get and that why I think they really love Toronto. We’re able to provide that to some degree and I hope the general public realizes that and makes them happy while they’re here.”

4. Get creative

Another way to try and get a celebrity to come to you is to show your excitement as you wait for them at the red carpet. On the low end of the commitment scale, you can make a sign. Others have even more time on their hands.

Morawetz recalls the time a man brought his young son dressed up in an Iron Man costume to see Robert Downey Jr. on the red carpet. The actor loved it and came over to talk to them and take pictures.

READ MORE: TIFF 2015 Films We’re Looking Forward To Watching

You don’t need a kid to reel in a celebrity, though. Just be yourself and have fun.

TIFF 2015 runs from Sept. 10 to 20.

LISTEN: ET Canada’s Cheryl Hickey, Rick Campanelli and Jeremy Singer talk about TIFF 2015 and what’s happened in the past

With files from Rosey Edeh, Global News

© 2015 Shaw Media

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