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Everyone encounters a celebrity at some point or another during their lifetime. Most fans like to commemorate the moment they meet a star by getting a signature from them. However, not all celebrities welcome the request for their John Hancock.
Here are 15 celebrities who are notoriously anti-autograph when it comes to their fans.
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In 2008, former Beatles drummer Ringo Starr released a YouTube video informing fans that he would no longer be signing autographs. Citing the fact that he was too busy, Starr warned fans “with peace and love” that he no longer wanted fan mail—especially those intended to be signed.
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In 2010, Ringo’s fellow Beatle band member, Paul McCartney, announced he would no longer perform autographs while out and about in daily life. The singer-songwriter told the UK-based Radio 4 Today Show, "Most people are very understanding because they understand privacy." The decision has since made McCartney’s signature in higher demand among collectors.
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Green Hornet actress Cameron Diaz is notoriously cagey when it comes to signing autographs. In a 2005 interview the actress reasoned that if she stops to sign for one person in the public, an entire crowd will form wanting the same. Autograph Collector Magazine has subsequently named Diaz among their worst signers several years in a row.
Batman actor Jack Nicholson will sign autographs on the red carpet, but seems more resistant while out in public. Word is that Nicholson once spent an entire hockey game signing for fans, only to later tell a journalist profiling him, “See? That’s why I don’t sign autographs.”
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"The Office" star, Steve Carell, also has a reputation for turning down public autograph requests. The actor is known to travel with an entourage who, among other things, deflects signature requests on Carell's behalf. When the actor does relent to autograph requests, he allegedly refuses to sign if handed a blue pen. Carrel believes the certain color of sharpie to be a sign that his signature will be resold by dealers for a profit.
Original Star Trek captain, William Shatner, flat out refuses to sign any piece of memorabilia for fans unless it is one of his books. At his book signings, he’s been known to only sign one book per person, insisting he must see every person who wants his signature.
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While the Die Hard actor will sign autographs at red carpet events and public appearances, Bruce Willis has a reputation for being icy towards autograph seekers outside these venues. In 2006, a source reported to Autograph Collector Magazine, "Bruce won't even look at you, and he actually seems mad that you're bothering him."
RED star, John Malkovich, sports a difficult signature to obtain. The actor has been known to tell eager fans, “I don’t sign autographs” or “I don’t contribute to collections.” However, the actor has been known to make an exception at fashion shows promoting his clothing line Uncle Kimono.
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Of all the celebrities on this list, Tobey Maguire is most well-known for his anti-autograph tendencies. He’s one of the few on this list to refuse to sign for collectors, fans, and even children. The actor has made both Autograph Collector Magazine and Kidzworld.com’s worst celebrity signer lists.
Back in the 1980s, Steve Martin grew overwhelmed by the constant request for autographs from fans who met him in person. Instead, Martin printed out business cards reading “This certifies that you have had a personal encounter with me and that you found me warm, polite, intelligent and funny” with his signature pre-signed. Though Hollywood urban legends report Martin still gives out the card, he abandoned the gimmick after six months. He has since embraced one-on-one encounters with his fans over autographs, reasoning when fans request them, “What they really kind of want is a little encounter; to find out what you’re really like in 30 seconds.”
John Densmore, former drummer for The Doors, released a statement on his website in 2011 to inform fans he will no longer be signing autographs. Densmore attributed the decision to autograph seekers “disrupting” his personal life. Though he will continue to do “official” signings, Densmore refuses public and mailed signature requests.
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Since the days of her hit talk show, Rosie O’Donnell has refused autograph requests from adults. The actress/comedian has said that adult autograph seekers make her “sad,” but she is willing to make an exception for children.
John C. Reilly
Step Brothers star, John C. Reilly, is known for simply refusing to sign autographs for fans. He’s been quoted by Autograph Collector Magazine as saying, “It’s a free country, and I can do what I choose. I choose not to sign.” The actor also caught heat from collectors at the premiere of his film Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, where Reilly chose to only sign memorabilia in character as “Dewey.”
John C. Reilly’s Step Brothers co-star, Will Ferrell, stopped signing autographs upon learning people were reselling his signed merchandise on eBay. He has been named among Autograph Collector Magazine’s worst signers for several years in a row, a reputation he later spoofed on Conan. The comedian explained it was literally impossible for him to sign, holding up an artificial hook hand appendage.
Ghostbusters star Bill Murray often refuses his fans in-person autograph requests, not just because it’s intrusive, but because he seems to find it boring. Murray has been known to put his comedy skills to use to give his fans a more interesting one-on-one experience. In 2012 Murray made headlines after giving an autograph seeking fan the opportunity to instead perform with him in an on-camera slow-motion stride (ala a Wes Anderson movie).