‘Tis the season; TIFF 2013 is finally here in Toronto. This, of course, means different things for different young professionals (YPs). For Toronto’s “industry” people – those in entertainment, media, fashion and public relations – TIFF means that we could very well find ourselves guests at an exclusive celebrity party. If you have friends in the right places, you may also be lucky enough to score a spot on that coveted guest list. Just remember that a pretty smile or greasing the bouncer won’t work when it comes to TIFF. Once you’re in, however, there are a few rules to keep in mind when sipping cocktails among the elite of the entertainment world.
Be very careful when asking for photos (we advise not to in the first place).
Exercise extreme caution when asking celebrities for pictures, if you even dare to in the first place. Whether or not they are OK with pictures depends on the celeb. We have been at parties where it was required that cell phones were checked at the door. On the PR side of TIFF, we have ensured that party guests were strictly forbidden to take pictures of the stars or with the stars. Keep in mind that the celebs are there to unwind. If it’s a film party; they’ve likely been in press junkets all day and smiling for countless photographers on the red carpet – they don’t need to take any more pictures.
Never ask for an autograph
Asking for a picture may be annoying to a celebrity, but asking for an autograph while inside a celeb party is an absolute no. You may as well be an overly enthused tourist on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Don’t do it. You wouldn’t want to be asked to sign a pile of paperwork when you’re out trying to enjoy yourself, after all.
Don’t creep or spy
Just like it’s difficult to take your eyes off of attractive people at any party, it may be inevitably difficult to lose that celeb from your peripheral vision… no matter how hard you try. Try harder. You are more obvious than you look. Take the time to be in the moment with the company that you are with; the fellow partygoers are likely there for a reason and you never know what valuable connections may be made.
Don’t try to be noticed by the celebrity
Probably worse than lingering around and spying like a creep are those people who try their absolute hardest to be noticed by the celebrity. This could mean the attractive female who repeatedly walks by, strutting her stuff almost in slow motion to the bathroom, the guy who laughs too loud in attempt to catch attention, or (worst ever) the people who accidently bump into the celeb. Just like anyone else, celebs like a good challenge as well. If you want to catch the attention of the hot single Hollywood fixture, perhaps the best strategy is to act like you don’t notice them at all.
If you do find yourself locked in conversation with a celebrity – either as a group or one-on-one – the most important thing to keep in mind is to act normal and like yourself. Talk about regular things, like the food or the city, but remember to keep it short and sweet. Even if the celebrity is intrigued and engaged, they have a lot of people they need to chat with at the party. If you can (especially if you’re the one dominating the conversation), be the one to gracefully end it. And don’t be awkward; remember that you’re supposed to be there too.
Don’t drink too much
An industry party is not the time to unleash your wild child ego and party like a university student on St. Patrick’s Day… despite the open bar and glasses of bubbly that are so freely passed around. For one thing, security is amplified when celebrities are in the house, and if you are seen stumbling around in the presence of a celeb, you will immediately be seen as a liability. Bouncers are on high alert. For another, we wouldn’t want your alcohol intake to affect your decisions when it comes to any of the above.
A few more pointers? Dress the part, don’t be the last one to leave, and don’t spend your whole time tweeting about the party. Enjoy it.
Top photo courtesy of thejrexperiment