I arrived 15 minutes before the convention opened. People were around, but happily not as many as I expected. I guess the second con day is always a little more relaxed and not so crowded. At least this was my experience at Ghent a few years ago as I visited both F.A.C.T.S. days.
The whole organization was okay beside two points. I feared because I read this great report of Alipeeps’ Obsessions who went on Saturday you can read here . Why did the TPTB put the annoying Wii booth with the never stop talking guys with mics right next to the panel tent? Sometimes it was hard to understand something else than the guys outside, arg. And printing the photo OP photos took forever. I got mine 20 minutes before the convention closed.
The first thing I got was my autograph ticket of Tom. I liked this point. So I already paid and hadn’t to struggle with money when going to Tom. I saw his sign and knew I had 45 minutes before he would show up. Great, so I could check out the surrounding first.
As I turned around there was a HUGE Chewbacca with Neil Jackson and Christopher Gorham taking pictures, too funny. Neil Jackson surprised me most on the con. He was very sweet and cool. He waved once at me as I took a picture.
I came back from my walk along the aisles to get into Tom’s line with maybe 20 people/pairs in front of me and it didn’t last 10 minutes to get to Tom. It was just a bit mean I couldn’t see him at all. I’m not very tall, and all people in front of me blocked the sight. So I took a few photos of Neil and Christian.
I was more calm than expected stepping toward Tom. He flashed a big smile to everyone he met at the day. I bought a chocolate bunny for him as little gift to sweeten his day. He liked it and would eat it on his way home at the evening. Because the bunny was from Merci, he asked if it is from France and I told him, no from Germany. He asked where from Germany I am and told me after I said Berlin, that he was only one time in Germany as he visited Berlin a few years ago. Yeah! I told him to come back, because the city changed every week. I picked a photo and he asked for my name. He could spell Antje without to struggle which gave me a boost. I know the name is difficult for English speaking people (or everyone beside Germans and Dutchman). We shook hands and I said we would see us later.
I was relaxed with Tom, but I was shaking after. Yes, he has this effect on me.
By accident I stumbled into Neil’s panel. There are 4 different people playing headless on set. He is also a bad rider. They had to build a fake horse for him where he pretended to ride to get a scene done. He praised Tom for his quick learning of fight choreographies. Neil gets a few days for them and Tom shows up 15 minutes before shooting to learn.
So wonderful that someone taped the panel of Tom. I made lots of notes as I waited for the photo op to start. This way everyone can watch. It was very informative. I didn’t know they shoot up to 3 episodes at the same time. This is very unusual, isn’t it? TWD and CI didn’t work like this. I like that he gave a comic recommendation at a comic con. Hehe, rolling around in mud with Nicole.
The whole day he touched his beard and his glasses a lot.
The photo op send me to heaven. I knew the photo will be bläh, because I never like photos of me but the experience was just wonderful. It started only 30 minutes later than announced. Tom looks so serious on most of the photos I saw yet, but he again flashed a HUGE smile to everyone as they stepped to him. So he did to me. He even recognized me, asked how I am. It felt like he wanted to go on talking but we had to pose for the photo. We lay arms around each other and I snuggled closer. It was soft and light and just perfect. Big Sigh! He also didn’t let go at the second the photo was taken, just held me a moment longer. Maybe I just imagine this. But I love the imagination.
Now started the long wait for the photo to get printed. The whole convention got more crowded at the afternoon. Tom’s line was again very long but I had three more questions I hadn’t guts to ask during the Q&A. I knew he would be there for at least 90 more minutes. So I just waited for a moment his line slowed down.
16:00 was my time. I stepped in front of him and he greeted me with my NAME. He really remembered. I told him that I had three more questions:
- 1) Who was teaching the Hessian German? (because the pronunciation is horrible and you can’t understand anything without the English subtitle.
He was embarrassed that it is so bad and said he would pass it along. He asked for his own German line and I told him that it was okay, but from an English man I can understand. But the Hessian should speak it good. He didn’t know about the teacher, guessed someone from North Carolina who never visited Germany. Aren’t there a few (thousand) German actors in Hollywood looking for a job?
- 2) How big is your sweater collection?
I told him it was a tumblr question and he laughed about it, thought it was a funny question. I said I always like to look at photos of him in a sweater.
Too many, was the answer.
- 3) How long are Ichabod’s socks.
I had to explain me. Asked him if he can remember the scene with Jenny switching places in the ambulance at the opener of season 2. His trousers went up and there is still the sock without any sign of end. He explained they go up to his thighs and are held by an elastic band. Hot was my answer and I asked if we can see him just in the socks without the pants in season 3. He will transfer my request ;o)
We really had a nice and open conversation. He showed me the chocolate bunny again. Said, he can’t wait to eat it. He only got one more gift (something to drink). Unbelievable, when I think of Norman Reedus’ amount of stuff he got to each con.
I was still waiting for my photo as Tom decided to leave his table. He was the last one, all other actors already went backstage. He spotted me and we shared another few words about the bunny, we waved and said good bye.
I am so so happy that I went to Birmingham. Tom is such a wonderful, gentle, kind, attentive, open and beautiful man.