A week ago, Chelsea Gill recorded and posted to YouTube a silly song that asked the actor Jason Segel out for a drink. On Saturday, she was his date at an awards show.
If you find that hard to believe, you're not alone; Gill can hardly comprehend the whirlwind experience herself.
A recent graduate of Indiana University, Gill, 23, went to Chicago in August to try her hand at acting. To combat the loneliness she feels being away from her twin sister, Gill was spending free afternoons watching movies. It's a chance to escape, especially when those movies happen to feature her favorite actor.
"I was having a harder day and I was watching 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall' and I had my guitar with me and I was strumming along and I just started singing," Gill said. "I just started writing it. I wrote a little silly song -- it took me a half-hour to write. It was mostly just for my friends. I never thought in a million years that he would see it."
Egged on by friends, she posted the video online, never expecting a response. Then Segel tweeted a link to the video, calling it his "favorite thing, maybe ever," and Chelsea got a call from his publicist. The star had a surprise for her, the publicist told Chelsea.
"I was freaking out for like two days," she said, laughing.
The surprise was more than she could imagine. Segel would be in town that weekend for the Chicago Film Critic Awards show, and he wanted to bring Chelsea along. She could even bring a guest, Segel said.
Chelsea made the obvious choice: her twin sister.
"He came off the elevator, I had my sister with me and he didn't know I had a twin," Chelsea recalled, laughing. "So he saw her first and he was like, 'Hey!' And she was like, 'No, I'm not her, that's Chelsea.' He was really tickled by that."
Once the identities were straightened out, the three got a drink at the Ritz-Carlton before heading to the awards show.
"We talked about my video and he was just really flattered and he really loved it, which, of course, sent me over the moon," she said. "He's so down to earth, he was so funny -- he's absolutely everything he appears to be in interviews."
It helped that Chelsea kept her cool -- maintaining her composure was a major goal -- and resisted the temptation to use the opportunity to advance her acting career.
"I did not do this to try to get famous. I wanted to be really respectful," Chelsea said. "It was one of those things where I know I wrote this video and I'm so glad he liked it and we got along so well.
"But he's this busy guy doing his own thing and I'm so humbled and touched that he would take time out of his busy schedule just to get a drink with me."
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