My First Meeting With Tom Sizemore

On February 6th 1998, (26th birthday), I met Tom Sizemore.  The report below shows just how starstruck I was and, looking back on things, I’m not sure I’d be much different now.  Anyway, enjoy…

Okay, I don’t know about you, but I’m not a great believer in fate. I don’t expect to plan two days in New York City, (the other side of the world), and, on my birthday, to walk into one of my acting icons. Anyway, I did, and this is how badly I handled it……

Walking through Little Italy with a girl I really wish I hadn’t come away with, I come across a film crew taking up the whole road. Hanging around on a corner, we are ushered further up the road. Walking along, we pass four black director’s chairs with names on them in turquoise blue letters. I don’t recognise any of them….apart from the last one – ‘TOM SIZEMORE.’ Doing a double take, I begin to fall apart.

Over the next hour I go through a whole pack of cigarettes and have the mickey taken out of me by an electrician for being so hysterical (I don’t mind – he gives me a pen!). I suddenly see Tom walking up the street in a fawn coat, open shirt and white singlet. From what I can gather they’re filming a mob style picture. I ask an aide if I can go up to him and am told “Tom’s not in a good mood right now.”

Ignoring this, I scream out “TOM!” It’s my only chance to meet him, you understand! He looks over! I stand there for a second trying to think of something vaguely intelligent to say.

“Can I get a photo with you?” is all that comes out of my mouth – intelligent, huh?

“When I’m done filming.” he replies. Oh My God, he replied!!!!

I watch five or six takes of Tom walking up the street with some guy. Each time, he grabs an apple from a fruit stall and starts munching on it – I’m assuming he likes apples! Each time “cut!” is called he walks over to a stunning blond woman whom I correctly assume is his wife, actress Maeve Quinlan. The aide I have been talking to for about an hour tells me now would probably be a good time to approach him. Terrified, I walk up to them.

“Sorry to bother you, would now be a bad time?” I feel sick, my voice feels ten octaves too high and I want to cry.

“No, now’s not a bad time,” Tom smiles.

I now start falling apart big time as I give Tom a piece of paper to sign and the pen the electrician gave me. The pen doesn’t work at first, so Maeve turns around so Tom can lean on her back to write.

“What’s your name?” He asks me. I can’t remember!

“Jeremy,” I squeak, unsure if it is or not.

“Where are you from?” he asks as he signs.

“I’m from a place called Rugby in England,” I tell him before going into a monologue of “Oh My God, we were just wandering up through Little Italy and I saw your chair. You are one of of my icons, you’re part of the reason I’m here. I can’t believe this……” All the time a voice in my head is asking “You’re forgetting to breathe aren’t you? Slow down your speech and breathe, god damn it!!!!”

Tom smiles, obviously amused at how much of a wreck I am and poses for two photos with me that Maeve takes – really good shots (thanks Maeve)! I shake his hand but can’t remember doing so, just that he was wearing black leather gloves. I thank him again (for the thousandth time!) and stagger off.

Maeve comes into a nearby cafe just after us and I sit and chat to her about where she would recommend us visiting. We discuss LA, Boston and Detroit and she is so natural. Tom comes in a short time later and they both head off for pizza. I, on the other hand, am unable to eat for the next ten hours!

That night I sit through ‘Jackie Brown,’ a film I was desperate to see. To this day I don’t remember a thing about it. Star-struck, or what? I was amazed at how nice both he and Maeve were. There was no “I’m a huge celebrity and you need me to make your life worthwhile” attitude about them at all. They could so easily have just walked off onto the closed area of the street, but didn’t. They both took time to speak to me and appeared genuinely interested as I stuttered and stammered at them. I was a huge fan before, but I now have them to thank for the best afternoon of my life and for making my birthday bearable – my companion sure didn’t! All this talk of him being a total primadonna on set was news to me, another case of the crew being unable to handle a real star, I guess. They also recommended visiting Chicago to me , which I did, and it was amazing – thanks guys!


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