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Promoted Fanboy

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"My entire career has been a secret plan to get this job. I applied before but I got knocked back because the BBC wanted someone else. Also, I was seven."
Steven Moffat, upon being named lead writer/producer for Doctor Who

Some fans have all the luck. Somehow they've managed to be a part of the very industry, or even the very work, that they're a fan of. This can range anywhere from the minor, such as a Contest Winner Cameo, or to the point where the fan has creative control and is Running the Asylum.

Compare Ascended Fanboy (a fan In-Universe), Ascended Fanfic, Big Name Fan (the ones most likely to be promoted), Official Fan-Submitted Content. Contrast Hire the Critic.

As noted below, many franchises have been around for so long that it's only natural that fans would get to work on them.


Notable Franchises:

    open/close all folders 

    Star Trek 
Multiple series
  • In his book Worlds of Wonder, writer David Gerrold states he was one of these already during the show's original run, which led him to write "The Trouble with Tribbles" and the five failed episode pitches which preceded it. Though he was intended to cameo in "Trouble", his part was recast, and he ended up cameoing in The Animated Series and Deep Space Nine Tribble episodes instead.
  • Dwight Schultz is a big fan of Star Trek. In fact, it was the first show he ever watched in color television as a child. He worked with Whoopi Goldberg on the movie The Long Walk Home and told her how big a fan he was of the show and her part in it. She had a word with the writers, resulting in Reg Barclay.
  • Peter David was a longtime fan of the original Star Trek series. After starting a career as a comic-book writer, he began writing the official Star Trek comic for DC Comics, and later leveraged that into writing numerous best-selling Star Trek novels. And on top of that, he even wrote a few episodes of TNG.


  • Star Trek: The Motion Picture has a scene where a lot of fans were used as extras. The unions really complained about this one.
  • Christian Slater, a huge Star Trek fan, got his role as a serviceman in Star Trek VI reportedly because he begged his mother, one of the film's casting directors, for the chance to appear in a minor role.
  • Almost happened to Tom Hanks, yet another long-time Trekkie, who auditioned for the role of Zefram Cochrane in Star Trek: First Contact. He was very disappointed when he was already committed to another project, and the role went to James Cromwell.
  • Neal McDonough, who played Lieutenant Hawk in First Contact, is a huge Star Trek fan.
  • Although he died eight years before the release of First Contact, Roy Orbison was a big fan of Star Trek, and his song "Ooby Dooby" is featured in the film.
  • Bryan Singer revealed to Patrick Stewart that he was a Star Trek fan, and therefore Stewart arranged for him a quick cameo in Star Trek: Nemesis.
  • This is how Zachary Quinto, who plays Sylar on Heroes, got the part of young Spock in the reboot movies.
  • Karl Urban was a hardcore Trekkie growing up. He was cast as Dr. McCoy in Star Trek (2009). He also does the most faithful impression of the original character out of the entire cast.
    • His interpretation was apparently faithful enough that Leonard Nimoy teared up at the premiere seeing his old friend represented on screen again.
  • Simon Pegg is also a major fan of Trek, and he has said that he was placed in Star Trek (2009) (canonically the eleventh) to disprove comments his character made on the sitcom Spaced: "Sure as every odd-numbered Star Trek film is shit."
  • Randy Pausch, who listed being captain of the Enterprise as one of his dreams in "The Last Lecture" appears as a bridge member of the Kelvin in Star Trek (2009). He walks past the captain's chair, says, "Captain, we have visual", and is not seen again.

The Next Generation

  • Ronald Moore arranged a tour of the Star Trek: The Next Generation set through his girlfriend and managed to pass a script to one of Gene Roddenberry's assistants while there. By the show's final season, he was head writer.
  • The entire role of Guinan was created because Whoopi Goldberg was a Star Trek fan (specifically, Nichelle Nichols was her inspiration to start acting) and wanted on the show.
  • When Stephen Hawking played himself in the episode "Descent," he said "I'm working on that" in regards to the warp core mockup on the Engineering set and asked to be seated in the captain's chair on the bridge set.


  • Jason Alexander has credited William Shatner for him wanting to be an actor and watched the original series growing up. He guest starred in an episode of Star Trek: Voyager and played a comedic version of Kirk in The Ultimate Trek special.
  • Tim Russ, most famous for his role as Lieutenant Tuvok in Star Trek: Voyager, was a devoted Trekkie long before that and had already had several small roles in other Star Trek series.
  • King Abdullah II of Jordan is a giant Star Trek nerd. In 1996, when he was still Crown Prince, he appeared in a non-speaking role on Star Trek: Voyager.


  • Scott Bakula (who played Captain Archer) became a Trekkie in the 1970s when the Original Series first went into syndication.
  • Jolene Blalock (who played T'Pol) was also a Trekkie growing up.
  • Anthony Montgomery (who played Travis Mayweather) was a fan of the Original Series and had previously auditioned for several roles on Voyager.
  • Seth MacFarlane is another admitted fan, and he guest starred in two episodes of Star Trek: Enterprise. And then got to have the entire Bridge cast of The Next Generation be guest stars on Family Guy. Twice!
  • Gabriel Koerner, amateur 3D artist and huge Trek fan was interviewed for the documentary Trekkies in 1997. Fast forward eight years, and he was working on the CGI team for the fourth season of Star Trek: Enterprise, as well as the new Battlestar Galactica (created and produced by the above-mentioned Ron Moore).

Star Trek Online

  • The 90% of the development staff of Star Trek Online are this. Al Rivera, Daniel Stahl, Thomas Marrone and Jeremy Randall being the most prominent (the last two being promoted fanboys of STO proper) and are notable for getting the game released after Perpetual didn't do anything with the license and didn't want to see it die. Also Enterprise-F designer Adam Ihle, who has since gone on to be put along side other ship artists like Andrew Probert, Matt Jeffries and Mark Rademaker.

    Star Wars 
  • Samuel L. Jackson, a.k.a. Mace Windu, was a huge Star Wars fan before getting the part. He's even on record saying he would've played a generic Stormtrooper if it meant being part of the franchise at all.
  • Most, if not all, of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars voice cast have admitted to be long time Star Wars fans. Where do we even begin:
  • Ryan Weiber, one of the creators of the popular Star Wars fan film Ryan Vs Dorkman. While he doesn't work for George Lucas or ILM, he did work for LucasArts for a time; currently he is doing special effects work in Hollywood, notably on Heroes. His partner, Michael Scott, is also a budding filmmaker. Ryan did finally get to work on special effects for The Force Awakens and Rogue One, cementing his status in the franchise.
  • Matt Sloan, the voice of Chad Vader on the YouTube series by the same name, was eventually noticed for his uncanny impression of Darth Vader and eventually landed a role as Darth Vader himself in various video game spinoffs of the Star Wars franchise, specifically The Force Unleashed, the Empire at War expansion, Vader's Guest Fighter appearance in SoulCalibur IV, and Star Wars Battlefront (2015), along with portraying Vader as the Banker (albeit staying visible) in a Deal or No Deal special.
  • After making TROOPS, Kevin Rubio went on to write Star Wars comics and work on episodes of Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
  • Steve Sansweet, who has the largest personal collection of Star Wars related material in the world, was eventually hired by Lucasfilm itself to be their Director of Content Management and Head of Fan Relations, a position he held from 1996 until 2011.
  • Hayden Christensen always was interested in Darth Vader in his childhood. In Revenge of the Sith, the original intention was to have a large stuntman in the Vader suit, but Christensen convinced them to build the suit for him and use various camera tricks to make him appear to be the 6'8" David Prowse size. When he strolled onto the set clad in Vader armor, the crew cheered.
  • In 2005-2008, Star Wars fan club members competed to write databank entries for obscure characters that weren't covered previously, or covered very slightly. The winning writers of the entries were then rewarded with having their ideas be a part of Star Wars canon. And it got even better for some. As of June 2009, three of those authors were later hired by the company to write short fiction stories for the website.
  • As Ewan McGregor (Obi-Wan Kenobi in the prequels) put it:
    McGregor: I've been waiting nearly twenty years to have my own lightsaber. Nothing's cooler than being a Jedi Knight.
    • The fact that Ewan's uncle, Denis Lawson, played Wedge Antillies in the original trilogy surely added to the fanboy fire.
  • In 2003 a fan named Ara Roselani met Timothy Zahn at a convention. She was cosplaying as the Chiss Admiral Thrawn in his white uniform, and they became friends. When Zahn wrote Outbound Flight, he included the character Ar'alani, a female Chiss admiral in a white uniform.
  • It's no secret that Seth Green is a big fan (prime evidence: Robot Chicken). He voiced a one-off character in season two of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, who reappeared twice in season three (despite being killed in his original appearance) due to the non-linear nature of many of season three's episodes, and his character being the sidekick to Ensemble Dark Horse Cad Bane.
  • Cartoonist Genndy Tartakovsky grew up with Star Wars and eventually made Star Wars: Clone Wars for George Lucas in 2003 to 2005. The race of the character Durge was known as the Gen'Dai.
  • Curtis Saxton, physics PhD and writer of the infamous Star Wars Technical Commentaries, a very extensive site meant to figure out how the physics of the universe worked, was hired as a technical advisor for the prequels and eventually wrote some of the various Incredible Cross-Sections books, giving the Star Wars fans a massive edge in the Star Wars vs. Star Trek debates in the process.
    • They have come under fire, however. Particularly when Gary Sarli, Star Wars RPG writer and fellow scientist and Star Wars aficionado, pointed out the huge inconsistencies that went into making the books, specifically how Saxton's calculations for the Base Delta Zero command underestimated the number of ships involved by at least an order of magnitude, the amount of time required by at least an order of magnitude, and overestimated the thoroughness of the attack by about 3 orders of magnitude. Then he used these massively inflated numbers for the basis for almost everything else.
  • Modi is the pseudonym for a Hungarian fan who had been making unofficial maps of the Star Wars galaxy for years. When Lucasfilm decided to publish The Essential Atlas, they hired him to make some draft maps that professional artists would finish. His work ended up being such high quality that they scrapped the "professional artists" plan and just used his maps as is.
  • Grant Imahara was but a wee child when he first saw R2-D2 on the silver screen. Almost thirty years and one electrical engineering degree later, he became Artoo (or rather its pilot and main technician).
  • ILM visual effects supervisor Ben Snow remembers reading an article in a special effects magazine about Dennis Muren's work on The Empire Strikes Back, and wanting to work with Muren—he got his wish when the prequels came around.
  • Fanboys was a short fan film before it got turned into an actual Hollywood picture (with typical Hollywoodifacation, of course).
  • Warwick Davis, who played Wicket the Ewok, was a Star Wars fan when his grandma heard that Return of the Jedi was looking for actors under 4 feet. He had a big set of Star Wars action figures, which Mark Hamill completed for him.
  • J. J. Abrams, who has always been open about being much more of a Star Wars fan growing up than a Star Trek one, is directing The Force Awakens and Episode IX.
  • Ansel Hsiao, known online as "fractalsponge," made Star Wars art for many years. Eventually, his work caught the attention of LucasArts, and several of his works became canon. His contributions stretch to another franchise—Halo, where Hsiao modeled the UNSC flagship Infinity.
  • Leland Chee, a longtime fan, was first the main tester of The Phantom Menace video game. He was hired by Lucas to manage the Holocron, which was THE definitive, top-secret collection of past, present, and future projects. He was also the czar of the EU, with his word being almost equivalent to that of Lucas. He received another promotion after the Continuity Reboot, being tapped for the Story Team now in charge of managing the new continuity. Oh, and he's also the manager of the Indiana Jones continuity.
  • Two British members of the R2-D2 Builders Club were hired to build and maintain the R2-D2 used in The Force Awakens, on Kathleen Kennedy's recommendation after she saw a demonstration of the club's work. The club's R2-KT droid, which memorializes a young fan, will also appear in the film.
  • The 501st Legion, a group of Stormtooper and Bounty Hunter cosplayers who make publicity appearances for Star Wars-related events.
  • Just about the entire of the cast and the director of Rogue One, really. Possible special mentions to Ben Mendelsohn (who described himself as a "Star Wars Tragic", reminiscing about Star Wars collectable cards back in the 70s and proclaiming he had 2 of the rarest card) and Diego Luna (positively giddy as he told interviewers "I still can't believe I'm in a Star Wars film!").

    Doctor Who 
Since Doctor Who has been running since 1963 (hiatus not withstanding), there's an entire generation of people who loved the show enough to work their way into the industry and onto the staff. Some of the more recent fans were born after the show had started running. Though some of them also ended up Running the Asylum.
  • Matthew Waterhouse had been a Doctor Who fan before he got the role of Adric and had a letter published in an early issue of Doctor Who Magazine (before getting the part).
  • David Tennant. He has said that it was because of Doctor Who and particularly, Peter Davison's performance as the Fifth Doctor that he wanted to be the Doctor. He even got into acting specifically to play the Doctor.
    • In 2007, Tennant appeared as the Tenth Doctor and in the special episode "Time Crash", Peter Davison guest-starred as the Fifth Doctor, while the Tenth Doctor met his earlier self. At one point, the 5th Doctor takes a close look at the 10th and laments "Oh no. You're a fan!" Near the end, the 10th tells the 5th that he "was [his] Doctor." The whole episode is David Tennant and Steven Moffat gushing in-character about the earlier doctor.
    • And now that Tennant has married Georgia MoffettPeter Davison's daughter, who also had a role as the Tenth Doctor's "daughter" in one episode — he's gone rocketing past mere "Promoted Fanboy" and it's possible a new Trope needs to be invented just for him.
      • And before the two even met, Georgia's son said that David Tennant was his favorite Doctor. David adopted him when he and Georgia married, so now Tyler's favorite Doctor is also his father. They're a whole Promoted Family.
    • Tennant, like everyone else, loved Sarah Jane Smith. Not only did he get to work with Elisabeth Sladen during "School Reunion," but he got to be the one to give her the heart-melting "Goodbye, my Sarah Jane," that Sarah Jane waited decades for.
  • Building off of Tennant's promotion? The Fifth Doctor, Peter Davison himself, was also this - having been a massive fan of the Second Doctor's run on the series. That's right, the Second Doctor crafted the Fifth Doctor, who in turn crafted the Tenth Doctor. Expect another Doctor in about 20 to 30 years based on Tennant...
  • Sixth Doctor Colin Baker is also a big fan of Doctor Who before and after his run — having been a regular viewer ever since the First Doctor's tenure and still watches the show to this day. He's gone on record saying that "The Empty Child"/"The Doctor Dances" are the best episodes of the series.
  • Inverted with Matt Smith, who became a hardcore fan while playing the role. Watching the Second Doctor influenced his costume choice (particularly the bowtie), and he apparently wrote a fanfic where the Doctor meets Albert Einstein. He also apparently called up Steven Moffat in the middle of the night to rave about "The Tomb of the Cybermen" after watching it.
  • Peter Capaldi was also a lifelong fan of the series before getting the role of the Twelfth Doctor; his fan exploits during the 70's included writing a fan letter concerning the Daleks to the Radio Times, founding an official fan club and sending many letters to the production team during the 70's, which led to him meeting Jon Pertwee. In his first interview after his casting was announced, he said that he hadn't played the Doctor since he was nine (although he was in a 2008 episode of the program). What's more, not only was he a fanboy, he was Fan Dumb - his constant begging of the BBC to allow him to run the fan club, which already had a runner, annoyed the Doctor Who producer's secretary so much that she wrote a letter to the fan club president in which she said: "I wish the daleks [sic] or someone would exterminate [Peter C.] or something to that effect".
  • Nicholas Briggs was fascinated with the Daleks and other aliens growing up, and later got into both TV writing and voice acting, including several Doctor Who radio plays. When the TV series was revived in 2005, he was asked to be the voice of the Daleks (and the Cybermen and several other alien races).
  • John Barrowman was also a big fan and also describes himself as an Otaku.
  • Russell T. Davies, the first showrunner of the new series, was also a tremendous fan and had actually sent in scripts during the show's original run, and in the mid-1990s actually wrote an officially licensed Doctor Who novel for Virgin Publishing's New Adventures line. For years he'd stated that the only reason he would return to working for The BBC was if they were to start up Doctor Who again and let him run it (this is debatable as before signing on to do Doctor Who he was committed to produce a production of Casanova for the BBC). As early as 2000 there had been talk of him doing a revival, too. He also had a knack for pulling in other fans to work on the revived series.
  • Douglas Adams was a huge Doctor Who fan. He wrote three Doctor Who stories in the late Seventies ("The Pirate Planet", "City of Death" and the uncompleted "Shada") and was the show's script editor for the 1979 season. He had written the Affectionate Parody play Doctor Which while at school. The Krikkit storyline of Life, the Universe and Everything had also originated as a proposed Doctor Who movie screenplay.
  • There's a reason there's a Steven Moffat quote at the top of this page. In fact, Moffat appeared on TV once to discuss the show's failings at the time from a fanboy perspective. He later wrote short stories for the officially licensed Doctor Who Virgin Publishing line, and in 1999 wrote the Comic Relief spoof The Curse of Fatal Death.
  • Many of the people writing for the Doctor Who Expanded Universe and the revival television series had an involvement with the AudioVisuals fan audios series starring Nicholas Briggs as his version of the Doctor. One of the more prominent AudioVisuals creators, Gary Russell (who had auditioned for the part of Adric), has script edited for the Whoniverse shows and Briggs has voiced the Daleks, Cybermen and sundry other monsters (in both the new series and Big Finish Doctor Who, the latter of which he is also the executive producer of) and appeared in person in Torchwood: Children of Earth.
  • Neil Gaiman described writing "The Doctor's Wife" as the closest thing to being God he will ever experience (and gushed over both Moffat and RTD in a blog post after the episode aired).
  • Mark Gatiss is the only person to have the distinction of having written for every "New Who" Doctor and having appeared on the show as an actor twice. If you count Big Finish audios and the Virgin Publishing novels, he has written for seven Doctors, and he's also the only person to play both the Doctor and the Master.
  • Derek Jacobi, who, when he played the Master in the episode "Utopia", announced being in Doctor Who was one of his two unfulfilled ambitions. (The other was being in Coronation Street, which he fulfilled with a background cameo appearance in 2012.)
  • When Jamie was introduced, a young actor called Hamish Wilson was watching the episode, and thought: "I could do that." Two years later, he did.
  • When Lord Sugar got a cameo in "The Power of Three", he said in an interview that he'd been watching the show for more than forty years.
  • A rather different example than most: Bill "Pfutz" Pfutzenreuter and Barry Oursler, designers of a pinball machine based off the series, were big fans of the series proper.
  • Doctor Who has only produced two spec scripts from writers with no professional experience: Andrew Smith (seventeen at the time) with "Full Circle", and Marc Platt with "Ghost Light".
  • Jon Culshaw, an impressionist and Doctor Who fanboy who openly admits that his noted taste for velvet jackets is swiped from the Third Doctor, and who played the Fourth Doctor in several Prank Call segments on Dead Ringers. He got to play the Fourth Doctor for real in the Big Finish story "The Kingmaker" as well as in The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot.
  • The extreme amounts of these in the revival of Doctor Who was spoofed in this sketch from John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme which follows the career path of a child whose dream is 'to be the man who makes the noise of the TARDIS'. As an excruciatingly brutal Brick Joke.
  • The Twelfth Doctor's title sequence was created by Billy Hanshaw, who put up a fan-made sequence on the Internet to show his graphic skills... and got a call from Steven Moffat, who was so impressed, he offered him the job!
  • Chris Chibnall was a fan in the eighties. He was the showrunner for the first two seasons of the spin-off Torchwood and became the showrunner for the main show after Steven Moffat left. He can be seen on YouTube haranguing John Nathan-Turner and Pip and Jane Baker on an '80s TV discussion show about the failings of Seasons 22-23.
  • Corey Taylor of the band Slipknot was a fan of the series, and when the production team learnt the band was touring Cardiff in 2015, they invited Taylor to not only visit the set, but to voice the Fisher King's roar in the episode "Before the Flood".
  • Playwright Rona Munro started watching the series as a little girl in 1963, and grew up to write "Survival" and "The Eaters of Light", making her both the last person to write for the original series and the first person to write for both the original and revival series. Discovering that her first (and as far as she knew, only) story for the series was the last one for a dead show walking was painful for Rona to say the least, on top of the personal difficulties she was having at the time. Returning to find the revival a massive success, made by people who loved and cared about the show, was a wonderful contrast for her.
  • Bradley Walsh was a fan of the show in the '60s, with his favourite Doctor being William Hartnell, but he drifted away during the '70s as he was too busy playing football. He subsequently went on to play the Pied Piper in The Sarah Jane Adventures and Graham O'Brien in the main series.
  • Mitch Benn is a huge Doctor Who fan, having written two songs specifically on the subject, and included several references in his other works. He is also a great fan of The Beatles. In Big Finish's 1963: Fanfare for the Common Men, he not only gets to appear in Doctor Who, he plays a character based on John Lennon.
  • Cosplayer Athena Stamos has become the official "appearance" of the War Doctor's companion Cinder, from the novel Engines of War. She has done official photoshoots, and the character model in Doctor Who Legacy is based on her.

    Lord of the Rings 


    Kamen Rider 
  • Masahiro Inoue, the lead actor in Kamen Rider Decade, is a long-time Kamen Rider fan, especially Black and Black RX (Hell, he’s even part of the franchise’s Periphery Demographic both before and after Decade). When Decade's journey took him to Black RX’s World, Inoue made a blog post in which he effectively geeked out over the entire situation.
    • Inoue's co-star Ryouta Murai got this quite literally. As a child he was a huge fan of Kamen Rider Kuuga; jump ahead nine years, and he gets to be Kuuga (well, an Alternate Universe incarnation of the character) in Decade.
      • Decade promoted another long-time fan, pop musician Gackt, by giving him the role of Badass Normal Joji Yuki, AKA Riderman in All Riders vs. Dai-Shocker; he even appears in-character in the music video for the film’s theme song, “The Next Decade”.
  • Steve Wang and his brother Mike Wang are avid Kamen Rider fans, particularly of the Showa era television series. Then in 2009 they became the co-executive producers, writers, and directors of Kamen Rider Dragon Knight. Steve himself stated in an interview that producing Kamen Rider Dragon Knight was a dream come true for him.
  • Renn Kiriyama, who plays Shotaro in Kamen Rider Double, is like his predecessors a huge Kamen Rider fan. Specifically, he's a fan of Black, which might explain why Kamen Rider Joker, his character's solo Rider form, performs poses and finishing moves just like Black. He's also stated that Kamen Rider Ryuki was his favorite Heisei Rider series growing up, and that he was particularly fond of Kamen Rider Ouja. Unfortunately, Masaki Suda, who plays Shotaro’s Heterosexual Life-Partner Philip, has of late become too high profile and busy to reprise his role, which leads to awkwardness in more recent crossovers when Kiriyama reprises his role but no mention is made of Philip.
  • Keisuke Kato was also this; he is a big Kamen Rider fan and landed the role of Kamen Rider IXA in Kamen Rider Kiva as Keisuke Nago.
  • Gaku Sano, the lead actor in Kamen Rider Gaim, has stated that he was a huge fan of Kamen Rider Kuuga growing up, and that he hopes to inspire children just as Joe Odagiri did before him.
    • Yutaka Kobayashi, the actor of the rival Baron, was a fan of Kamen Rider Ryuki growing up. Fitting as Gaim is tonally similar to Ryuki.
    • Mahiro Takasugi, Mitsuzane/Kamen Rider Ryugen’s actor, is also a fan of Kamen Rider Ryuki with a particular fondness for Kamen Rider Knight.
    • And to cap it all off, series writer Gen Urobuchi has admitted to drawing influence from Kamen Rider BLACK and, you guessed it, Kamen Rider Ryuki. Seems a fondness for Ryuki is a common trait in the cast and crew of Kamen Rider Gaim.
  • Kamen Rider Drive star Ryoma Takeuchi is another name for the list, this time being a fan of Kamen Rider Double and Kamen Rider Accel in specific. In fact, this paid off in the character focus movie Drive Saga: Kamen Rider Chaser: Takeuchi asked the staff if there was any way they could get Accel to cameo; thankfully actor Minehito Kinomoto was game, leading to the two Riders meeting thanks to Jurisdiction Friction and eventually teaming up.
  • Kamen Rider Ex-Aid actors Hiroki Iijima and Toshiki Seto are fans of Kamen Rider Ryuki, to the point that their favorite riders are Shinji Kido/Ryuki and Takeshi Asakura/Ouja respectively. Seto would even costar with Asakura in a V-Cinema release.
  • Shōma Kai/Parado is a massive fanboy for Kamen Rider Kuuga, which he made abundantly clear in most of his answers during a post-Ex-Aid cast interview.
  • Kamen Rider Build
    • Atsuhiro Inukai, the lead actor of Kamen Rider Build is a sheer Kabuto fan. Sento Kiryu is slightly childish Insufferable Genius to Tendou’s god one.
    • Eiji Akaso, who plays Ryūga Banjō and was previously in Season 2 of Kamen Rider Amazons, has said that his favorite Rider is Kuuga and his grandfather once gave him a toy Arcle for his birthday.
    • Yukari Taki, the actress for Sawa Takigawa, has expressed that her favorite Shōwa and Heisei Riders respectively are Kamen Rider V3 and Kamen Rider Accel, the latter of whom she actually costarred with in his own V-Cinema.
    • Yasuyuki Maekawa, the actor for Sōichi Isurugi/Blood Stalk’s human disguise, stated in a press conference that Skyrider and Stronger were his favorite Rider series growing up.
    • Build’s writer, Shōgo Mutō, became a fan of Kamen Rider while watching it with his son, and aimed to give Build the same Multiple Demographic Appeal he enjoyed from the early Heisei series.

Other Works:

  • Nicolas Cage is a huge Ghost Rider fan, who's always wanted to portray the character (he even has him tattooed on his arm). He got his wish, even though that meant he had to cover the tattoo to portray the character.
  • Kevin Smith is probably the best known promoted fanboy on the planet. The sheer amount of knowledge he has about comics (and in turn how many he's written) is evidence enough.
  • Ian "Potto" Flynn, writer for the Archie Sonic comic series from issue 160 until its very end, and current writer of Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW), was once a fanboy with his own fan comic. Other notables from the Sonic the Hedgehog fandom who went into doing stuff for the line are J. Axer and Dawn Best. The future Freedom Fighters from Sonic Universe #25-28 might look awfully familiar to anyone who read that fancomic.
  • Mark Gruenwald. He was a lifetime Justice League fanboy who spent his whole career at Marvel. Though he didn't create the Justice League analogue Squadron Supreme, he did write their highly-acclaimed limited series.
  • Jim Shooter started writing Legion of Super-Heroes when he was 13. He's been in the industry ever since, including becoming Marvel's editor-in-chief.
  • Don Rosa. Like so many people of his age he was a big fan of "The Good Duck Artist". While he didn't get any education in art or narration, he wrote and painted Donald Duck series for various fanzines, as well as several LTE:s. He even corresponded to Carl Barks himself from time to time. After a new publishing company got the license to make Donald Duck comics, Don Rosa applied for the job as an artist by sending in a mail. He wrote that he was born to make new Donald Duck stories in the spirit of the old Carl Barks comics. He got the job, added some massive Continuity Porn to the series (against Barks' wishes) and dedicated all his stories to Carl Barks.
  • E. Nelson Bridwell of pre-Crisis Superman comics got the job of his dreams and loved every minute of it.
  • Mark Waid. This is his studio.
    • Gruenwald, Bridwell and Shooter are some of Waid's major influences.
  • Geoff Johns first suggested to DC that Superboy should be a clone of Clark Kent and Lex Luthor in a fan letter as a kid. Now he's basically DC's #1 writer and the man behind some of their most successful books and events as well as the company's Chief Creative Officer. And in his breakthrough first arc for his Teen Titans run, he did indeed reveal that — contrary to what we all believed all these years — Superboy is in fact cloned from Superman and Lex Luthor.
  • Tristan Huw Jones was a huge fan of the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comics as a kid in the 1980s; when Mirage relaunched the series in the 2000s, he became one of the main writers (and frequently hailed as one of the best of that crop).
  • Dave Gibbons was a fan of Dan Dare as a child. When Dan Dare was revived by 2000 AD, he was one of the artists who got to draw it, much to his delight.
  • And of course, the fathers of the superhero genre, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, were reportedly huge, stereotypical nerds in love with science fiction, and with their creation, they ushered in that subgenre of sci-fi/fantasy.
  • Joss Whedon was a fan of Runaways long before he got to write his own arc, and was rather vocally upset at the idea of it ending at 18 issues: the letter he sent was included in the first TPB.
    "Last issue? What do you mean, LAST ISSUE? What the hell does that mean? Did you type it wrong? Were you thinking of something else, like maybe the Sub-mariner or the Smurfs? How can there be a last issue when the story is obviously going to continue for years? You're some kind of wrong person. Have it looked into."
    • Nick Lowe, who served as an editor for most of the series' run, was a huge fan of Brian K. Vaughan. He's also a huge fan of Neil Gaiman and Orson Scott Card, and played a role in luring both of them to write for Marvel.
  • Gerard Way (of My Chemical Romance and The Umbrella Academy) interned at DC before he was in a band, and used to see Grant Morrison come into the offices on occasion (and marveled at how he dressed like King Mob). Several years later, Morrison is name-dropping "The Black Parade" in his superhero-history-cum-memoir Supergods, and playing the villain in the band's music videos.
  • Matt Frank, an artist who was known for his popular Godzilla Neo fanart, is now doing writing and artwork for offical Godzilla comics.
  • The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe didn't cover everything. Enter the Appendix to the Handbook of the Marvel Universe, a completely unofficial website that tried to chronicle every single thing that the official books either didn't cover at all, or didn't cover to a full extent. The senior staff has since been hired by Marvel Comics to write the newest versions of the OHOTMU.
  • As a child, Steve Blum read comic books at a store his uncle owned. These days, he does voice work for a great number of Marvel Comics characters, most famous of which being Wolverine.
  • Josh Keaton grew up reading Spider-Man comics before being cast in The Spectacular Spider-Man. He's described himself as a big comics fan in general too (with Spider-Man in particular).
  • Unlike the previous actors who played the role, Brandon Routh is a huge fan of Superman. He even dressed as Superman for Halloween a year before and had Superman bed sheets as a child.
  • Several people involved in the Marvel Cinematic Universe qualify, but Samuel L. Jackson stands out for the way he got the part of Nick Fury. Marvel approached him to ask for his likeness rights for the Ultimate Marvel reimagining of Fury, and Jackson said yes - on the condition that he got first chance to play Fury in a movie.
    • Anthony Mackie is such a huge fan of the Falcon that he was actually disappointed when he found out his costume wasn't going to be the character's classic red spandex.
    • Despite his departure from the directorial role but still given a story, screenplay and executive producer credit for the film adaptation, Edgar Wright is a fan of Ant-Man, as he read comics about him during childhood, plus he owns a copy of Tales of Astonish #27 (Hank Pym's first appearance) and Marvel Premiere #47 (Scott Lang's first appearance). Also his replacement Peyton Reed is a Marvel fan too since he was considered to direct Fantastic Four (2005) before Tim Story signed on and Guardians of the Galaxy before James Gunn signed on.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (IDW): Both Andy Price and Katie Cook had plenty of G4 fanart on their DeviantArt pages before the series was announced, and Katie has said she was a fan of the original G1 series. This leads to such things as Derpy being featured prominently and being fond of muffins, “flank” being used as a synonym for “butt,” etc.
    • Amy Mebberson, Heather Nuhfer, and Heather Breckel were also all big fans before working on the comic. Pretty much everyone involved is a brony/pegasister!
  • Mark Hamill was a comics and sci-fi fan before becoming a voice actor for characters like The Joker.
  • Japanese voice actress Megumi Hayashibara is a big fan of Peanuts and she got the chance of voicing Marcie in the dub of some animated specials.
  • Annette O'Toole loved reading Superman comics. Eventually, she landed a role in Superman III, as one of her favorite characters - Lana Lang. Some time after that, she played Martha Kent in Smallville. Reportedly, she knew even more about Superman than the writers did. (They didn't even know that Annette O'Toole had a major part in an older Superman adaptation until she told them.)
  • Similarly, Amy Adams was a big Superman fan as well, and fought hard to play Lois Lane. After several near misses and a part as a Monster of the Week on Smallville, her hard work paid off and she was given the part in Man of Steel. She even at one point said that her dogged determination was a very Lois Lane way of going about it.
  • Sergio Aragonés was an avid reader of MAD Magazine while he was still a student in Mexico. Not only did Sergio later became published in MAD after moving to USA, he is one of the most prolific contributors to the magazine, having been published non-stop for over 50 years and counting!
  • Stephen De Stefano was originally just a mega-fan from Queens who would send lots of long letters and drawings to DC Comics. All the mail attracted the eye of Bob "The Answer Man" Rozakis and the two struck up a friendship. Before long, Stephen was a summer intern at DC and some of his characters started showing up in comics. A few years later, he and Bob co-created 'Mazing Man. Since then, he's done comics and TV storyboards for several companies.
  • Comic book writer Ed Brubaker loved reading Captain America as a kid. His favorite character was Cap's Kid Sidekick Bucky. In 2005, he was brought over to Marvel in order to take over writing for Captain America. The first thing he did? Bring back Bucky as the Winter Soldier.
  • Voice actress Kari Wahlgren has stated that she's a fan of Wonder Woman, Birds of Prey and writer Gail Simone. She'd voice Black Canary, one of the heroines of Birds of Prey, in the DC Nation Green Arrow shorts and voiced Wonder Woman in LEGO DC Comics Super Heroes: Justice League vs. Bizarro League.
  • Evan "Doc" Shaner has been a Shazam fanboy for years, and frequently puts Captain Marvel fan art up on his website. He was selected to do the Shazam artwork for Convergence, drawing what's intended to be the final appearance of the original Fawcett Comics version of Captain Marvel and the rest of the Marvel Family.
  • In 2011 Sophie Campbell made some modern redesign Jem fanart and said she would love to make a comic if Hasbro asked her. Come 2015 and she's one of the main artists for the IDW Jem and the Holograms comics, along with being the person who redesigned the characters.
  • Actor Phil Morris is a comic book fan and was already familiar with Vandal Savage's origin before voicing him in Justice League.
  • Some Marvel comics from the 1970s and early 1980s have fan letters written by the likes of Kurt Busiek and Fabian Nicienza, who would later become acclaimed comic writers themselves.
  • Sterling Gates was a comic fan from a very young age, and a huge Supergirl fan since he read Crisis on Infinite Earths. In 2008 he got to write her solo book, penning a critically acclaimed and comercially successful run. Since then he has written a good number of comics, often featuring Supergirl, and even one episode of her show.
  • Andy Mientus note , actor, singer, writer, theatre nerd, and professed witch, got to write a series of The Backstagers. The first installment is entitled The Backstagers and the Ghost Light. note 
  • Marko Čermák, the artist working on the Czech comics Rychlé šípy since its revival in late 1960s, used to read it as a child in the 40s, and counts himself among those whose life and values the comics profoundly influenced.
  • Roy Thomas grew up with the superheroes of the 40s and gave up a scholarship just to write for Marvel. He succeeded Stan Lee on several titles, and eventually as editor as well, did Call Backs to stories others had already forgotten, and brought various Golden Age characters into the modern canon. Unsurprisingly, he was the guy behind The Invaders.
  • Keith David grew up reading Black Panther in his youth as a kid along with Silver Surfer. He would later go one to voice Black Panther himself.

  • Peter Jackson started to experiment with special effects as a teenager, inspired by such artists as Willis O'Brien, got all the way to making his own high-budget version of King Kong.
  • Tracie Thoms was a RENThead in her younger years, and ended up cast as Joanne in the feature film.
  • The A-Team: Sharlto Copley was an A-Team fan from a young age. He stated in an interview that he got to show his audition tape ("Things Murdock Would Do in a Hotel Room") to Dwight Schultz, the original Murdock, who both laughed and cried when he saw it. Sharlto must have had a nerdgasm of epic proportions.
  • Famed aviator and industrialist Howard Hughes was a big fan of movies. So big, in fact, that he bought the film studio RKO Radio Pictures in 1948. Unfortunately for RKO, love for cinema doesn't necessarily equal being a good studio head. Hughes ran RKO into the ground during his seven-year run, firing 75% of the staff in his first few weeks and shutting down production for six months in 1949 in order to investigate the politics of the remaining 25%. Hughes left RKO in 1955, and the studio went out of business two years later.
  • As a child, BRIAN BLESSED used to play Flash Gordon with his brother, and used to actually pretend to be Vultan. Then he got to play Vultan in the movie. He later said that it was one of the most embarassing moments of his life when he shot his first action scene and "I had this big bazooka, and I flew in, shouting "Follow me, Flash!" *boom* *boom* *boom* *kaboom*. And the director shouted "Cut! Brian, we will put in the special effects".
  • Jim Carrey was a Batman fanboy as a child. In The '90s, he got to play The Riddler in Batman Forever.
    • Billy Dee Williams appeared as Harvey Dent in the 1989 Batman. He was a fan of the comics who signed on hoping to play Two Face in a sequel. Unfortunately, when the time came for Two Face to appear in Batman Forever, he was replaced with Tommy Lee Jones. Fortunately, he had a pay-or-play contract, so he got a big check for it anyway. Then he voiced Two Face in 2017's The LEGO Batman Movie.
    • United States Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) is an avowed fan of Batman, and has since had cameos in Batman & Robin and The Dark Knight: the former as an extra, and the latter as a guest at Bruce Wayne's party who stands up to the Joker. Since he could have been playing himself or an Expy thereof in The Dark Knight, also counts as Politician Guest Star. He also appeared in The Dark Knight Rises. Most recently, he played an actual Senator in Batman v Superman!
    • Even executive producer Michael Uslan is a fan of Batman as well. In fact, he collected both Batman and Superman comics ever since he was a child.
  • The primary reason Rosie O'Donnell played Betty Rubble in the live action movie of The Flintstones is because she was a lifelong fan of the original cartoons.
  • Noomi Rapace is an admitted fan of the films of Ridley Scott and credited him as an inspiration for her acting career. She would then get the lead role in his film Prometheus.
  • AJ LoCascio has been a huge fan of the Back to the Future films from when he was a kid. He now gets to voice Marty McFly in the Telltale games — and has also gotten to meet Bob Gale, Christopher Lloyd, and even Claudia Wells. He has yet to make contact with Michael J. Fox, though.
  • Evanna Lynch grew up as one of the biggest fans of the Harry Potter book series, even going so far as to name her cats after characters in the books. When she was selected to play Luna Lovegood in the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix movie, her resemblance to the character went a long way toward hyping the movie for fans. Her performance, lauded as one of the best in the film series, led to even more praise for her and the movie. She was such a huge fan (and aware of her resemblance to Luna) that she made herself a custom Luna Lovegood outfit for Halloween, complete with homemade radish earrings. Then she wore the earrings to the audition. Then she wore the earrings — which, again, she made because she was that big a fan of Luna — in the movie, as Luna. Ms. Lynch is the ultimate Promoted Fangirl.
    • J. K. Rowling herself has admitted that Evanna Lynch was such a perfect Luna that she made her way into her writing as the only actor from the films ever to do so. She even says to have heard Evanna's voice in her head while writing.
  • J. J. Abrams had grown up making his own movies and being a huge fan of Steven Spielberg's early work. After being featured in a newspaper article about a Super 8 film festival, Abrams was contacted by Spielberg's assistant and was given the job of editing and restoring his idol's own 8 mm movies. Abrams got to work directly with Spielberg on Super 8, which was the former's love letter to the latter and which was produced by Spielberg himself.
  • Andrew Garfield has wanted to play Spider-Man since he was three, and gets his chance in The Amazing Spider-Man. Garfield invoked the trope when he appeared at Comic Con to promote the film dressed in a poorly-made costume and mask, and only revealed himself as the actor who would play Spider-Man when he removed his mask to join the panel onstage.
  • Van Ling was a nerdy film school graduate who loved sci-fi, especially the Alien series. Around the time that Aliens was released, he and two film school buddies built a working power loader costume that could be operated by one person, and was completely mobile. James Cameron's then-wife, Gale Anne Hurd, heard about Ling's project, and had him demonstrate it in the 20th Century Fox parking lot, and eventually referred him to Cameron himself, who hired Ling as a creative liaison and researcher for The Abyss. He would go on to play a large part in many of Cameron's projects, including design and visual effects work for Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
  • John Carpenter has stated one his early film influences was Howard Hawks' The Thing from Another World. In 1982, he directed his own version, The Thing.
  • Mike Myers said that the first book he read was The Cat in the Hat and was a huge fan of it. In the Live-Action Adaptation, he would wind up playing the Cat himself.
  • Sam Mendes is a confirmed Bond fan who got to direct Skyfall and Spectre.
  • Tony Curtis grew up being a fan of both Cary Grant and submarine movies, and finally got to work with Grant in the film Operation Petticoat.
  • Marlon Wayans is an admitted fan of G.I. Joe and ended up playing Ripcord in the 'film adaptation.
  • Director Danny Cannon was a big fan of Judge Dredd and had actually won a poster design contest for a planned Judge Dredd film at age 19 with this design, proposing Harrison Ford in the leading role of Judge Dredd and Ridley Scott as director. Cannon eventually directed the 1995 film Judge Dredd, though the end product was very different from what he had conceived due to Sylvester Stallone's input on the project.
  • Christina Perri is a big Twilight fan, so she was absolutely thrilled when the filmmakers asked her to write a song for the movie (which included a free early showing)
  • Rob Bottin was a big fan of horror and monster movies growing up and he admired the work of Rick Baker, one day he sent him a letter along with some monster drawings, Baker was impressed and trained him in and he became one of the most famous special effects artists of all time starting at age 14.
  • Gareth Edwards first became a Godzilla fan watching The Godzilla Power Hour as a kid in The '70s and The '80s before going on to watch the films themselves. He then went on to direct the 2014 reboot of the franchise and has frequently talked about how blindsided he was that only his second film foray, following Monsters, is an old dream come true.
  • Benicio del Toro himself had been a long-time fan of Lon Chaney , especially of his performance as Lawrence Talbot. He reveals in an interview that he always wanted to portray him, and wouldn't you know it, he got his wish.
  • James McAvoy is an avid sci-fi/fantasy geek, and he has become a very lucky fanboy in his acting career.
    • He was a huge fan of the Dune novels prior to starring as Leto Atreides II in the Children of Dune miniseries.
    • He also adored The Chronicles of Narnia, and considers it an honour to have been able to play Mr. Tumnus, who was his second favourite character in the books (Aslan being his ultimate favourite).
    • He loved The X-Files as a teen and fancied Agent Dana Scully, so he found it intimidating to work with Gillian Anderson, whom he kissed in The Last King of Scotland.
    • He had stated that one of the reasons he wanted to play Professor Charles Xavier was so that he can embody a young Captain Picard. He frequently expressed to interviewers how much it delighted him to share a scene with Patrick Stewart in X-Men: Days of Future Past, and the standard Blu-Ray release includes a featurette called "Double Take: Xavier & Magneto" where McAvoy can't stop fanboy-ing over his idol. He was also fond of the X-Men animated series when he was younger, and can hum the theme song from memory.
  • Daniel Radcliffe had idolized James McAvoy when he was a teen, so he considers it a great privilege to act alongside the man who inspired his acting career in Victor Frankenstein. Daniel mentions in the Nov. 2015 issue of Empire that he was star-struck when they first met on set.
    Radcliffe: I was nine when I met Maggie Smith. I didn't know who Maggie Smith was, so there was no fear of being awestruck or anything. But when I met James... I had grown up watching Inside Im Dancing, Atonement, The Last King of Scotland... He was somebody I always really looked up to, so I think easily the first week or two it was just a lot of me being like, "Oh my god, he's so good."
  • Tye Sheridan was exhilarated that he got to work with with James McAvoy, his idol, in X-Men: Apocalypse.
    Sheridan: I came back from having a week off and it's my first scene to shoot with James McAvoy, and let me tell you something—James McAvoy is my idol! We get along great, and I've told him how big of a fan I am, but just to even be working with him—just to meet him and talk to him is amazing. But having a scene where I'm one on one with him—my god, it's insane!
  • was a fan of the X-Men franchise who identified Nightcrawler as his favorite character and was subsequently cast in X-Men Origins: Wolverine to play a mutant with similar teleporting powers.
  • Pat Regan became a fan of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea at five and is now a celebrated expert on diving suits and building replicas of the submarine. He also wrote and published a prequel to the film, Vulcanium.
  • Hugh Bonneville, Nicole Kidman and director Paul King all had fond memories of Paddington as kids, hence why they all agreed to work on the film adaptation.
  • Most of the cast and crew of Into the Woods signed on because they enjoyed the musical the film was based on. James Corden has stated that he always wanted to play the Baker in a West End version.
  • Mara Wilson mentioned in an essay on her website (and in many interviews) about how Roald Dahl's book Matilda was a favorite of hers and her family's, and how she and her brothers used to play Matilda games and recite lines from the book. When her mother mentioned in passing that one of the scripts she was reviewing for her daughter to audition for was called Matilda, she leapt at the chance and intended to do as best a job as she could at playing the title role, as the book had meant so much to her. Later, she got to review Matilda The Musical and gave it and its star her approval and enthusiasm.
  • Tom Hardy has been a diehard Gary Oldman fan dating back to his drama school days in the 1990s, repeatedly referring to him as his "all-time hero" and similar terms. As of 2015, they've starred in four films together (Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, The Dark Knight Rises, Lawless and Child44)
  • Chris Pratt was a big Jurassic Park fan growing up. In 2015, he starred as the protagonist (sort of) of the fourth movie.
  • Michael Sheen was apparently such a big fan of TRON that his agent actually hid that fact while negotiating Sheen's deal to be in TRON: Legacy, fearing Sheen would accept any lowball offer just to be in it.
    • Unsurprisingly, so were Daft Punk (who cite the 1982 film's composer Wendy Carlos as an influence). Allegedly, they spent their meeting with Disney executives regarding the film's score asking, in effect, "is this gonna be done right?"
  • Donald Sutherland and Elizabeth Banks both approached the creators asking for their roles in The Hunger Games because they were huge fans of the books. Additionally, they both requested major expansions for their chosen characters (President Snow and Effie Trinket, respectively) based on their own ideas - and got them!
  • Octavia Spencer who plays Johanna in the Divergent films describes herself as "a huge fangirl of the books" and saw the first film twice in one weekend.
  • Lily Collins was a big fan of The Mortal Instruments books and made several calls as soon as she heard a movie was being made to get an audition for Clary.
  • Cable mogul/Renaissance Man Ted Turner's favorite movie is Gone with the Wind- in 1986, he purchased MGM for 74 days, then sold it back, but kept the library, hence making him the owner of the movie, and he launched both TNT and Turner Classic Movies with a broadcast of the film (indeed for the former, it was the first time the movie had aired on cable at all).
  • Pierce Brosnan was a fan of the James Bond films from an early age, after seeing Goldfinger in theaters. His first wife Cassandra Harris played Countess Lisl von Schlaf in For Your Eyes Only and noted then that he'd be perfect as Bond one day. Sadly, she passed away before it happened.
  • Ben Schwartz is a huge fan of the Sonic the Hedgehog series, and aspired playing the title role for years before finally getting the opportunity to do so for the live-action film adaptation.

  • Famous author Isaac Asimov became interested in the Science Fiction pulp magazines sold in his family's candy stores when he was a child. He began writing when he was eleven, and managed to get published when he was nineteen ("Marooned Off Vesta", 1939).
    • In 1977, he became editorial director of a science fiction magazine which was named after him.
    • And then in 2000, Honda named a really real, real robot after him as a nod to his near universally accepted 3 laws of robotics, which he invented.
  • Michael Moorcock became editor of the small UK-based pulp magazine Tarzan Adventures when he was just 16
  • Brandon Sanderson was a huge fanboy of The Wheel of Time, and was picked to finish the series after Robert Jordan's death.
    • And brought along some other fans for the ride: for a charity event, Sanderson raffled off chances to appear as bit characters in the final book. The randomly selected winners got a character based upon them, with a WoT-ified version of their name, and a basically matching physical description. The characters are all mostly resourceful protagonists of an everyman flavor, swept into the Last Battle.
  • Robert Bloch, author of Psycho, started his career with H. P. Lovecraft pastiches; Lovecraft eventually dedicated a story to him.
  • Abigail Breslin, fan of the American Girls Collection, played the main role in Kit Kittredge: An American Girl.
  • A fair number of Sherlock Holmes fans have gone on to write canonical (or as close to as is possible when the guy who owns the fandom is dead) material that have been published, performed on TV or radio or had some other decent stamp of approval. Working out who was a fan and wasn't is tough since there's a LOT of latter day writers. However, at the very least Stephen King and the above mentioned Isaac Asimov have written published Holmes stories and were fans.
  • Kingsley Amis was a noted fan of James Bond, writing a number of books on the subject, and finally was asked to write a canon novel for the series. Similarly, Raymond Benson had been fond enough of the series to write unofficial works before approached to write in canon, and eventually contributed six original novels. Notably, Benson ignored much of the earlier continuity.
  • Spider Robinson had always been a vocal fan of Robert Heinlein to the point that many of his own works included references to Heinlein and his works. As his career advanced, he met and became colleagues and friends with Heinlein himself. Callahan's Key even included a scene where the characters meet Virginia Heinlein (Robert's wife) and "adopt" Pixel, the cat who walks through walls. In 2006, he published Variable Star which was based on an outline written by Heinlein and Heinlein was given "top-billing" as the author on the cover.
  • Promoted Fanboy: Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett took Blair Witch due to being such huge fans of the original The Blair Witch Project to the point where they didn't want any other film maker to "mess with it". While Ed Sánchez and Daniel Myrick, original creators of The Blair Witch Project, were originally trying to pitch their own Blair Witch 3 to Lionsgate, they saw Blair Witch and gave Wingard and Barrett their blessing, which Wingard and Barrett were grateful for. Wingard and Barrett had previously worked with Sánchez and the producer of The Blair Witch Project, Gregg Hale, on V/H/S/2.
    • Jason Constantine, a bigwig up at Lionsgate, got the ball rolling on getting Blair Witch started because he was a fan of the original, having seen it at its premiere.
  • Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is a massive Sherlock Holmes fan and coauthored the novel Mycroft Holmes with Anna Waterhouse.
  • Maps in a Mirror: In this book, when describing "The Originist", Card begins by saying that Fan fiction is a terrible way to learn writing. However, he then describes how he felt "sixteen again" when given the chance to write a story in an Isaac Asimov setting. He knew that the story he wanted to write would be a Foundation story.
  • Viktoria Ridzel, better known as Viria, is a popular fanartist for Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson and the Olympians and The Heroes of Olympus series who was commissioned to draw the official character portraits for the series.
  • Circa 1920 a twelve year old boy wrote a letter after L. Frank Baum's death that he could continue the Land of Oz series if needed. He was declined. 20 years later, Jack Snow became a "Royal Historian" (writer) for the Oz books with The Magical Mimics in Oz.

    Live Action Musical and Opera 
  • The general tendency/chance for this to happen is pointed out in many a Tony Opening Ceremony.
  • Andy Mientus was known for being the creator and maintainer of the first Spring Awakening group on Facebook, which had been granted official status. Several years later he was cast in the touring production of the show as Hanschen. He then went on to co-direct (with his husband, Michael Arden) the first production of what would become the Spring Awakening Broadway revival. When the original Hanschen for that production, Joey Haro, left, Mientus became a Descended Creator note  and stepped back into the role of Hanschen for the rest of the productions of Deaf West's Spring Awakening, from Los Angeles to Broadway.
    • From that same production, Josh Castille (Ernst) remarked that he used to watch Andy Mientus on TV (SMASH), and wound up kissing the latter eight shows a week.
  • In a documentary on Matt Lucas, he mentioned how he had been a lifelong fan of musicals and of Les Misérables in particular, and had always wanted to have a part. He was cast as Thenardier for the 25th anniversary concert.
  • Tom Chambers, known mostly as Sam Strachan from Holby City, has a history in musical theatre and his adoration of Fred Astaire's drum dance number in A Damsel In Distress led him to record his version of the number and send it out to various casting directors (which landed him his Holby City role). In 2011, he got the lead in the stage adaptation of Top Hat, aka. Fred Astaire's character.
    "I watched his films constantly from the age of ten upwards. I love his dancing style, his imagination and choreographic creativity. He is the reason I have fought for so long to work in this industry. He has kept me going and he is responsible for me getting my first big break."
  • A sixteen-year-old Richard Wagner attended a performance of Beethoven's Fidelio in April 1829 starring the actress and singer Wilhelmine Schröder-Devrient (1804-1860). He was so impressed that he sent a note to her afterwards saying that because of her he would now devote his life to creating opera. As it turned out, Schröder-Devrient would play leading parts in the first performances of Rienzi (1842), The Flying Dutchman (1843) and Tannhäuser (1845). In the latter two cases Wagner got to conduct her himself.
  • More than a few cases where a work left unfinished by the composer's death was completed by either a pupil of the composer (especially if said pupil was not really notable in their own right) or a scholar in a subsequent generation. Thus, the completion of Mozart's Requiem by his pupil Franz Sussmayr might qualify - or possibly the completion of Puccini's "Turandot" by Franco Alfano - but a more obvious case is Mahler's 10th Symphony completed by Deryck Cooke.
  • Tim Minchin has stated that the part of Judas in Jesus Christ Superstar was the only theatre role he had any interest in growing up, and his dream came true during the 2012 UK arena tour of the show.
  • Derrick Davis was only 11 when his parents took him to see The Phantom of the Opera after much begging on his part. He wrote a letter to then-star Davis Gaines and received an autographed picture-—which he carried with him while on tour as the third African-American to play the Phantom.
    "After seeing the show 14 times between then and now, it's definitely a dream come true."

    Live-Action TV 
  • Michelle Trachtenberg guest starred in the the episode of House, "Safe". She revealed on the December 22, 2006, episode of Late Night With Conan O'Brien that House is her favorite show, she is friends with one of the producers and she asked to be a guest star. Trachtenberg also said she has a crush on Hugh Laurie, and during the scene in the elevator in which House searches her genital area for a tick, Trachtenberg said she played a joke on Laurie by putting a note between her legs that read "I Love You."
    • She also claims to have been a huge fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer before joining the cast as Dawn Summers, and was even quoted gushing to Joss Whedon: "There was never a Buffy episode that sucked. I love you!" Joss's response: "So, next season, more Michelle, less Nick..."
  • In the 2008 American Gladiators, promotion to Gladiator in the second season was one of the grand prizes.
  • Kristen Bell (of Veronica Mars fame) was a big Heroes fan and friends with co-stars Zachary Quinto (Sylar) and Hayden Panettiere (Claire) before appearing as Elle Bishop in season two.
  • Speaking of Veronica Mars, both Kevin Smith and Joss Whedon had raved about the show (Smith on his website, Whedon on his website as well; he also wrote a rave review of the first season DVD set for Entertainment Weekly), and made guest appearances in Season 2. Also, fellow Buffy alums Alyson Hannigan and Charisma Carpenter were fans of the show before playing recurring roles.
  • Actor/comedian/author John Hodgman, a Battlestar Galactica fan who wrote a New York Times Magazine article about the franchise in 2005, got a cameo as a neurosurgeon on the show's final season.
  • Almost half of the Muppeters from Sesame Street: Or their interest of puppetry starts with Sesame Street (Kevin Clash, Steve Whitmire), or they have interest in Sesame Street as a show (Joey Mazzarino) or they liked puppetry for other reason, but their puppeter hero is Jim Henson (Caroll Spinney).
  • J. Michael Straczynski, once a science fiction fanboy extraordinaire, became a major science-fiction pioneer with Babylon 5, which arguably changed the genre (on television, at any rate) permanently.
  • Graphic artist and Mad Men fan Dyna Moe illustrated a Christmas card for her friend Rich Sommer, a member of the show's cast. In advance of the third season, AMC hired Dyna to create promotions for the show including a online avatar-generator.
  • This worked both ways with Amy Ryan's recurring role on The Office. Ryan was a big fan of the show and the people behind the show were all big fans of The Wire, even throwing a Shout-Out to it a few episodes before she showed up.
  • Hamish Blake and Andy Lee were fans of Rove Live in high school. Today they are probably the best reason to watch the show.
  • Johnny Depp got to be in his favourite The Fast Show sketch.
  • Richard Hammond was a devoted follower of the original Top Gear when he went to audition for the revival with Jeremy Clarkson. He claims that he finished the audition thinking what a great job it would be and fiercely envying whatever lucky sod finally got it (he did).
  • Elizabeth Taylor was a fan of General Hospital, so in 1981, she called the executive producer and asked for a cameo role. She got the role of Helena Cassadine.
  • Demi Lovato guest-starred on Grey's Anatomy, her favorite show.
    • Taylor Swift, another big fan of Grey's, had her song "White Horse" featured in one of the episodes.
  • Junya Ikeda, who portrays Gai Ikari/GokaiSilver in Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger, is a lifelong Super Sentai fan... just like his character. For bonus promotion points, he mentionned that in kindergarten, he wanted to be KibaRanger from Gosei Sentai Dairanger —- Gokaiger's Power Copying aspect allows for that.
    • Inverted with Nao Nagasawa (Nanami/Hurricane Blue in Ninpuu Sentai Hurricaneger), who became a devoted fan of the Super Sentai franchise while playing the role.
  • Debby Ryan was for the most part an average American teenage girl who had a few acting credits under her belt and a huge fan of The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. When she heard that they were holding auditions for a successor show, The Suite Life on Deck, she jumped at the chance and ended up landing the role of Bailey, one of the show's main characters. She's now one of Disney Channel's main attractions with a show of her own.
  • Rich Koz, the current Svengoolie, who applied for a writing position and became the show's star in both revivals when the original Svengoolie, Jerry G. Bishop, decided he didn't want the job back and gave Koz his blessing.
  • Kevin Smith spent the early '90s watching Degrassi Junior High and Degrassi High on PBS at work, and is a huge fan of the franchise, giving it several Shout Outs in his films and even naming a character in Clerks after his favorite Degrassi character. So when the series was revived, Smith jumped at the chance to direct the last three episodes of the fourth season — and he wrote himself into a brief romance with Caitlin Ryan, the character he grew up infatuated with.
  • The Megaoptera from Primeval were designed by a 16-year old fan of the show called Carim Nahaboo, who'd won a competition to design the most interesting creature.
  • Melissa Good aka "Merwolf" is a Xena: Warrior Princess fan known for her popular fan fic and uberfic. She wrote a short story in an Expanded Universe collection and two episodes of the actual series (season six's "Coming Home" and "Legacy").
  • Rod Roddy, the announcer on The Price Is Right from 1986 to 2003, had previously attended a taping of the show in its early years to seek advice from original announcer Johnny Olson on how to find work as a television announcer.
    • The same thing happened with Rod's successor, Rich Fields, who took over in 2004. Rich attended a taping when he was 18, and during a commercial break, he asked Johnny how he could get an announcing job.
    • Drew Carey has spent decades hero-worshipping Bob Barker, and leapt at the chance to succeed him.
  • Mandel Ilagan was the founder of the newsgroup and a contestant on the 1998 revival of Match Game. By 2000, he'd become a writer for Greed, and later worked as a producer for Fremantle Media (while there, he created one of Price's pricing games) and then Fox Reality Channel.
  • Joss Whedon is a fan of Glee, and is particularly fond of the character Brittany. When he finally got to direct an episode, he couldn't help but gush about how much he loved the character to actress Heather Morris.
    • This is the entire purpose of The Glee Project: to find a brand new actor and character (and maybe more than one) for at least a guest arc on Season 3.
  • As a kid, John Kassir read and collected Tales from the Crypt comics, which became one of his all-time favorites. Years later after becoming a professional actor, Kassir was called in to audition for and then cast to voice the Crypt Keeper himself in the Tales from the Crypt TV series.
  • Daniella Monet grew up a huge Nickelodeon fan and said in an interview that getting to work on the hit Nick show Victorious is like a dream come true for her and she sometimes has to pinch herself just to make sure she's not dreaming.
  • Victor Buono was a huge fan of the Batman comics, and agreed to play King Tut in the 60s Batman TV series because of it. Buono enjoyed playing the villainous Tut so much that, aside from the actors playing the primary four villains (Julie Newmar as Catwoman, Burgess Meredith as The Penguin, Frank Gorshin as The Riddler, and Cesar Romero as The Joker), he made more appearances than any other guest-star. He was once asked why he did the show so often and said, "Batman lets me get away with doing the one thing that we're taught not to do in drama school... overacting!"
  • Quentin Merabet, who plays Ulrich in Code Lyoko: Evolution, claims to have been a Code Lyoko fan and that his favorite character was Yumi.
  • Hayden Panettiere told Nylon magazine that she's "a big country music fan", and this was a year before she began playing a country singer on Nashville.
  • Power Rangers Wild Force writer Amit Bhaumik was a long-time fan of the franchise before he got hired. During the season he gave various shoutouts to his fellow fans (mainly via naming places after them). However, he ended up causing a Broken Base when he attempted to insert elements from his fan-fiction as canon.
    • Power Rangers RPM actor Eka Darville (who played Red Ranger Scott) was a fan of Power Rangers as a child.
    • Yoshi and Peter Sudarso are huge fans of Power Rangers and the Super Sentai shows, to the point of cosplaying as Rangers and auditioning for parts on the show for several years. Eventually they were both cast on subsequent seasons of the show, Yoshi in Power Rangers Dino Charge and Peter in Power Rangers Ninja Steel. Yoshi's co-star Brennan Mejia is also a fan, and has mentioned attending the fan convention Power Morphicon a couple years before he was cast.
      • Yoshi's even inserted an in-joke for Sentai fans, with his character in one scene humming the theme from Zyuden Sentai Kyoryuger, upon which his series is based. He also has the approval of Yamato Kinjo, Kyoryu Blue, his counterpart from Kyoryuger.
      • Yoshi visited Japan and finally had the chance to meet not only Yamato, but also Robert Baldwin (Kyoryu Cyan) and Masayuki Deai (Kyoryu Grey). Also as a bonus, he met the 2015 Super Sentai team, Shuriken Sentai Ninninger...because he had a cameo on the 34th episode on the show! Yoshi is the first Power Ranger actor to make an appearance on Super Sentai. (And for bonus points, Ninninger was the season that would later be adapted as Ninja Steel with Peter as part of the cast.) At this point, he's pretty much this trope defined.
  • The Ultra Series is such a long-runner that many of the live actors and voice actors from the series' later installments were fans and avid viewers of previous installments when they were kids and often have a favorite Ultra hero or monster.
    • Tatsuomi Hamada is a great example. Beginning with his first appearance as Tagalong Kid Nao in Ultraman Zero: The Revenge of Belial, he has made it clear that starring in the Ultra series is a dream come true for him. And then that was taken a step further when he was cast as Riku Asakura/Ultraman Geed, having once said that the role is a fulfillment of his childhood dream of becoming an Ultraman.
    • Megumi Han (who voiced Pega the Pegassa in Geed) is another good example. She's a huge fan of Ultraman and Ultraman Tiga, and hen she was announced as one of the cast for the Ultraman manga's motion comic, she got to meet Tiga in person and was moved to Tears of Joy.
    • Role Reprises are not uncommon in the franchise, so many of the ascended fanboys get a chance to meet the actors behind the heroes they watched as kids. Shunji Igarashi (Mirai Hibino/Ultraman Mebius) was quite excited to get to work with Hiroshi Nagano (Daigo Madoka/Ultraman Tiga) on Superior Ultraman 8 Brothers, while Tatsuya Negishi (Hikaru Raido/Ultraman Ginga) had similar feelings when meeting Taiyo Sugiura (Musashi Haruno/Ultraman Cosmos) on set for the Ginga S movie.
    • As for the writers, Chiaki Konaka and his younger brother Kazuya Konaka are Big Name Fans of Ultra Series and watched the earlier entries in their younger days so they became a writer and a director for different Ultra Series shows, including Ultraman Gaia where they worked together.
    • Inverted with Kohji Moritsugu, the actor of Dan Moroboshi/Ultraseven. He once described being on Ultraseven as having "changed his life", and it shows. His restaurant in Kanagawa is loaded with Ultra Series memorabilia, including suits and props from the shows, and he was even the president of the Ultraseven Fan Club for a while. Yes, you read that correctly - Ultraseven is his own number one fan!
  • Radio shock jock Howard Stern was a fan of America's Got Talent and claims to have watched every season of the talent show before he joined the judges' panel in Season 7 (replacing Piers Morgan).
  • Danielle Campbell was a huge fan of The Vampire Diaries before being cast on The Originals.
  • The Wiz featured several celebrity fans of the musical and/or the movie, including Queen Latifah (The Wiz) and Mary J. Blige (Evillene, the Wicked Witch of the West), in the 2015 NBC telecast.
  • Singer Shawn Mendes was a big fan of The 100, and got a bit part in the Season 3 premiere where he sings a song before being tackled by a drunken Jasper.
  • Survivor and Big Brother respectively have many examples of this since super fans have been cast in many seasons.
  • The Talk has an example of this which is very rare for a talk show. Rapper Eve who was one of the many ladies auditioning on air to be Aisha Tyler's replacement got the job. She admitted it to her hometown's CBS news station that she is a fan of the show. Another big fan of the show that did audition... Michelle Williams of Destiny's Child who notably disclosed her battle with depression on the show which made her suicidal during her time with Destiny's Child. Permanent co-host Sheryl Underwood gave Williams advice on dealing with depression since her husband committed suicide from it. Underwood and the permanent co-hosts of The Talk gave Williams full support sharing her battle with depression and wanting to normalize mental health as a discussion. Although Williams did not get the job, she replied to many fans on social media supporting her desire to be a permanent co-host on the show. Williams was extremely grateful to have been given to the opportunity to audition for one of her favorite shows.
    • Eve also had another one of those moments on the show. On February 9, 2018; Gina Rodriguez made a guest appearance on The Talk to promote her series Jane the Virgin which the ladies of The Talk made a guest appearance on that night's episode "Chapter Seventy-Four" in which Eve admitted to Rodriguez she is a huge fan of Jane the Virgin and was honored to be in that episode with her fellow co-hosts.
    • Co-host Julie Chen (who also hosts Big Brother) has some few notable Big Brother fans that currently (and have) sit at the table with her; Eve (which Sheryl Underwood revealed during the show) and Sara Gilbert (who admitted it walking into the Big Brother house when The Talk got to play ''Big Brother'' for the day). Former "Mother On the Street" Marissa Jaret Winokur is a huge Big Brother fan (who still communicates regularly with Chen about Big Brother) and is currently participating in the first Celebrity Big Brother in the US.
  • Ru Pauls Drag Race: Season 8 winner Bob the Drag Queen was inspired to do drag from watching the show. It premiered in 2009, and the later seasons have seen contestants who've been watching since they were children. There is something of a generation gap among the contestants, between the older queens who started their careers in the 80's, 90's, and 2000's when drag was still an underground niche, and the younger queens who grew up with the show and were able to use it as a "cheat sheet".
  • Margaret Thatcher became this for Yes, Minister. She was asked to present them an award, and insisted on writing a sketch which she performed with the cast. This sketch was broadcast live on national TV.
  • Ryan's Toy Review, a famous YouTube channel, did reviews of products from several Nick Jr. shows (most notably PAW Patrol before having his own show, Ryan's Mystery Playdate.

  • Lyman F. Sheats Jr. was one of the best pinball players during his time. After a stint of programming games at Data East Pinball, he went to Williams Electronics/Midway to program Brian Eddy's Attack from Mars and Medieval Madness. Currently, he works as a programmer at Stern Pinball.
  • John Popadiuk, who went from designing his own pinball tables at the age of six, to producing several hit Physical Pinball Tables, to running his own studio creating hand-made pinball machines for die-hard collectors.
  • Jon Norris, who created his own pinball game, distributed flyers for it, then secured a job as a designer at Premier.
  • Roger Sharpe was simply a top-rated pinball player, then got called to appear in court and make the Skill Shot that saved pinball. And that was before he become a pinball author and designer.
  • Slash of Guns N' Roses was already a pinball player and collector (he owned over twenty tables at one point) before he took his idea for a Guns N' Roses pinball game to Data East.
  • Black Hole was originally conceived by Joe Cicak, a pinball player from Pennsylvania, who gathered up some friends to build the prototype and present it to Gottlieb.
  • Steve Ritchie was promoted to pinball designer after creating Airborne Avenger in his off-hours for a year, then showing his design to Atari president Nolan Bushnell.
  • Before doing the artwork on Stern's Metallica pinball, "Dirty" Donny Gillies, a freelance artist, had previously customized an Earthshaker! pinball game into a Metallica game for the band.
    • Similarly, designer John Borg was a longtime Metallica fan long before he got to develop the pinball game.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Count 'em, just count 'em. Mick Foley, Tommy Dreamer and Bubba Ray Dudley watching Jimmy Snuka jump off the top of the cage, Edge being in the crowd to watch Hulk Hogan and The Ultimate Warrior battle at WrestleMania VI, Shawn Michaels and his "boyhood dream", every single thing John Cena says these days. It might be easier to count the wrestlers who aren't promoted fanboys.
    • Special mention to Edge for winning the tag title with Hogan.
  • Rob Naylor was a fairly well known name in the Internet wrestling community for quite a while before getting gigs doing commentary for various indy promotions. At one point, he was namedropped during an episode of Raw by CM Punk and not long afterwards was officially hired by WWE. He even worked as the ring announcer for their developmental promotion Florida Championship Wrestling.
  • AJ Lee went from an anime, video game and pro wrestling fangirl living out of motels with her family as a kid; there's a video from a WWE produced piece (back in 2001) of Lita at a signing for a just released video of hers and a teenage AJ shows up very visibly emotional at getting to meet who was presumably her idol. Now she's arguably the centerpiece of the entire Divas division, having multiple storylines involving her on-screen dating multiple superstars to becoming Raw GM to becoming Divas Champion.
  • Current WWE referee Charles Robinson idolized Ric Flair all his life (notably coloring and styling his hair to resemble Flair's), and after several years in the business got to work for WCW in 1997; in 1999 they finally acknowledged this on TV and made him a biased ref in favor of Flair. Many years after they both started working for WWE, Robinson received the honor of refereeing Ric's retirement match at WrestleMania 24.
  • Fans of MTV's The Real World were introduced to young Mike "The Miz" Mizanin, who wanted to go into professional wrestling and would cut wrestling promos on the show for the hell of it. As we all know what happened next, young Mizanin got a crack in the WWE, paid his dues, and eventually ascended to becoming WWE Champion, including headlining WrestleMania.
  • When Scott Garland a.k.a. Scott Taylor/Scotty 2 Hotty was 14 or 15 years old, wrote to the WWF asking what professional wrestling school the WWF recruited their wrestlers from and attempted to call Vince McMahon himself. He would go on to have his first match with the company as a high school junior.
  • Occasionally, a fan reaction goes viral, and WWE takes notice of it. The most famous examples are the young girl who was angry at The Miz's WWE championship victory and the African-American who witnessed the Undertaker's WrestleMania streak come to an end.
  • This happened in the worst possible way for David Arquette. A longtime wrestling fan, he was thrilled to work with WCW to make and promote the movie Ready to Rumble — and horrified when he learned that, as part of said promotion, he was going to be given the WCW World Heavyweight Championship and headline a pay-per-view despite the minor detail of not being a wrestler. He knew the fans would hate the idea, and him by extension, and only went through with it out of contractual obligation; he ended up donating every cent he made from WCW to the families of injured and deceased wrestlers.
  • Before The Moondogs became 16 time USWA tag team champions, Fifi was a fan in the audience. She'd not only get to join the Moondogs as they became more successful but help contribute by beating Miss Texas for the women's title belt in 1992.
  • Tommy Dreamer grew up as a fan of Carlos Colon and Abdullah the Butcher during their CSP feud. In 1994 he got to go to Puerto Rico himself for IWA, though it would not be until 2010 that he got to wrestle in the same promotion they did, now called WWC. Eddie Kingston grew up as a fan of Tommy Dreamer.
  • Mark Henry grew up as a fan of André the Giant. As a boy he fell over the fan barricade and was picked up and placed on the other side by Andre himself.
  • Sumie Sakai was already a Joshi but was a fan of USA pro wrestling. Since she got into the business at a time when there wasn't much work for women in the fifty states, facing Luna Vachon at an IWA Puerto Rico show seemed the closest she'd come but after four years of perseverance she stepped into New England Championship Wrestling and kicked off a feud with Mercedes Martinez.
  • Rather than try to take the Buffalo Bills back to the Super Bowl, outside linebacker Monty Brown signed with the New England Patriots in order to get closer to the headquarters of WWE. When that didn't work out he instead debuted for All World Wrestling League in Michigan after training with Dan "The Beast" Severn and Sabu. He'd eventually follow Sabu into WWE's ill-fated revival of ECW.
  • Low Ki was not shy about expressing his desire to go to Japan early in his career. Low Ki made it to Pro Wrestling Zero 1 in four years, where he lashed out at the perceived disrespect the Japanese wrestler had for his lack of size. He eventually became a face by default to the crowd though.
  • While working for New Japan, Shinsuke Nakamura would admit to growing up being a puroresu Geek. He would win four different IWGP title belts on numerous occasions during his stay in New Japan alone.
  • Nikita wasn't a fan of her local product but took to NWA UK and NAWA in Germany anyway, eventually meeting her goal of wrestling in the USA after six years when she debuted for SHIMMER.
  • As a rookie pro wrestler, Nikki Matthews took an interest in SHIMMER and eventually got added to the roster as a last minute addition after a year, where she met Portia Perez and formed The Canadian Ninjas, staples of the tag team division. Eventually fireballed her way to the singles title too.
  • Though Sweet N Sour Larry Sweeney debuted in 2000, he had shown up long before that as a fan at the International Wrestling Cartel's Super Indy Championship Tournament. He'd go on to win the sixth super indy.
  • Simply D'Vyne used to be a fan of WSU before becoming a wrestler. She got to wrestle a match on the second anniversary of WSU's transition to a women's promotion.
  • Rory Gulak was first seen at CZW events as a little boy dressed up as "Sick" Nick Mondo. In 2008, he'd debut for the promotion, still patterning himself the same way and calling himself Rory Mondo.
  • When Sami Callihan came to the WWN shows such as Full Impact Pro and EVOLVE in 2010 he made it clear that he was sick of the independent circuit and was mainly there to get the attention of a major promotion like Dragon Gate. He eventually mellowed out... a little.
  • Michael Elgin may have already been a professional wrestler but he was still a fan boy of Ring of Honor. He not only got to wrestle for the promotion after eight years but eventually went on to become a world champion. He's also a fan of Japanese 'strong style', eventually getting on shore for NJPW after twelve years, in the G1 Climax no less.
  • Paige Turner was first seen as a fan at an NWA Southwest show. She'd eventually show up as a competitor in NWA Houston in 2013. She has said that Chyna's workout video inspired her to lose 30 pounds while in high school.
  • Chris Jericho revealed in a Highlight Reel segment that Kevin Owens had been a fan of his since he was 16, and was able to team with Jericho for the better part of a year after coming to the WWE.
  • The team at What Culture Wrestling consists primarily of long time wrestling fans who've had various degrees of involvement in the industry from the journalism side of things, but as of 2016, they've formed their own independent wrestling promotion, WCPW (now Defiant Wrestling), where they act as managers, authority figures, interviewers, commentators, and (occasionally) wrestlers.
  • Watch an 80s All Japan Women's Pro-Wrestling match featuring the Crush Gals, and note how the audience is filled with screaming schoolgirls generating heat on the same level as Hulk Hogan at the same time. Now, consider the incredible depth of talent found in AJW's roster during the 90s. Surely you can see that this is not a coincidence.
  • Ronda Rousey is a huge fan of wrestling who cut her teeth instead at Ultimate Fighting Championship. However, she kept attending events and after a cameo at WrestleMania 31, she finally was hired by the WWE, making her debut at the Royal Rumble 2018.
  • Kara "Cherry" Drew said Randy Savage and Miss Elizabeth were her favorites.
  • Hell, Vince McMahon himself qualifies. He's said that, growing up, his favorite wrestler was Dr. Jerry Graham.
  • CHIKARA, full stop. Founder Mike Quackenbush took his Red Baron "Lightning" as an homage to one of his heroes, Jushin Thunder Liger. The December 28, 2011 edition of their YouTube series The Barber Shop asked various CHIKARA personalities who, growing up, their favorite wrestlers were.

  • Just about every pro athlete (unless they were raised/groomed from birth by a pro athlete parent) fits this trope, particularly the "big four" team sports in the United States.
  • ESPN held the "Dream Job" contest, where the winner would become a SportsCenter talent. Mike Hall, who won the first contest, now works for the Big Ten Network.
  • Bill James, baseball statistician, got his start developing his take on sabermetrics (baseball statistical analysis) while a night watchman in a pork products factory. In 2002, he was hired by the Boston Red Sox and helped them pick up two World Series trophies in 2004 and 2007.
    • He's not even the biggest example on the Red Sox. Theo Epstein grew up less then a mile from Fenway Park and dreamed of working for the team his whole life. Then he was hired on as the General Manager (the youngest in history) and assembled those same Championship squads.
    • Interestingly, a Bill James fan started doing statistical analysis on the 2008 Presidential election, putting his sabermetrics expertise to work analyzing voter polls. Nate Silver is now the head of the enormously well-regarded FiveThirtyEight blog, originally on The New York Times website and now part of ESPN, making him a promoted fanboy in a completely different field from his original interests.
  • Dave Flemming grew up listening to Jon Miller when he did broadcasting for the Baltimore Orioles. He is currently one of the play-by-play announcers for the San Francisco Giants and his usual partner when broadcasting is none other than Jon Miller himself.
    • Jon Miller grew up idolizing announcers like Russ Hodges and Vin Scully and pretending to "call" the simulated baseball games he played on Strat-o-matic as a kid.
  • Many of the people involved in running the Scripps National Spelling Bee were winners when they were kids.
  • In a rather odd example, Chilean economist and politician Jaime Estévez was a big fan of the Universidad Católica soccer club. Guess who is the current executive president of the club?
  • Brandon Crawford was born and raised in the Bay Area of California and was a huge fan of the San Francisco Giants. His family had season tickets to Giants games and even purchased a commemorative brick outside the Giants' stadium, AT&T Park. He now plays as shortstop for the Giants and has won two World Series with the club, not to mention a Silver Slugger and Gold Glove to boot.
  • Keith Olbermann has one of the largest collections of baseball cards in the world (over 35,000) and had his first baseball book published when he was 14. He's now a consultant for Topps and writes an official blog for MLB (oh, and does that other thing).
  • Formula One champ Lewis Hamilton started angling for his hero Ayrton Senna's seat by age 9, copying the Brazilian's helmet design and approaching team owner Ron Dennis. And then there's this video.
    • Another Formula One champion Sebastian Vettel grew up idolizing the legendary fellow German F1 driver Michael Schumacher. There is this photograph of a young Vettel receiving his karting trophy from his hero whom he would later race against (and beat) in F1.
  • Now-retired Indy Car champion Dario Franchitti adores Jim Clark. Many people have a piece or two of memorabilia. Franchitti has an entire room full of it. And when offered an opportunity to drive Clark's Indy 500-winning car, he made sure he dressed in a replica of Clark's own overalls and period-appropriate gear.
  • Suk Hyun-Jun of AFC Ajax. He essentially showed up at Ajax's practice fields with a pair of cleats and repeatedly asked to join the team. After being allowed to practice with the teams reserve squad the trainers were impressed enough to offer him a 1 year contract.
  • Chad le Clos was a huge fan of Michael Phelps while growing up and his biggest dream was to race against him one day. Not only did he get the chance to do that at the 2012 Summer Olympics, he beat him for gold! Afterwards, he went up to Phelps and told him, "You're my hero."
  • These two photos are of Johan Goosen standing next to Jean de Villiers, a member of the Springboks (South Africa's national rugby team) - in the first one, he's just a boy; in the second, he's a Springbok himself.
  • Derek Jeter didn't just want to be a professional baseball player. He specifically wanted to be a shortstop for the Yankees, his favorite team growing up. Now he's considered one of the best players to ever don the pinstripes.
  • David Freese grew up in the St. Louis area and was a big fan of the Cardinals. In 2011, he became both the NLCS Most Valuable Player and the World Series MVP playing third base for... the St. Louis Cardinals.
  • A substantial portion of NASCAR's current crop of younger drivers in the field like Kyle Larson, Trevor Bayne, Kyle Busch and Joey Logano grew up as fans of Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt, or Darrell Waltrip, among others. Denny Hamlin is still a card-carrying member of Gordon's fan club.
  • In 2002, Joe Silva was a Mixed Martial Arts superfan working at an arcade parlor when he called up an executive at the Ultimate Fighting Championship with some unsolicited suggestions. He made an impression and spun this opportunity into becoming the UFC's long-time chief matchmaker, exercising an incredible amount of control over the company's events and the sport's direction.
  • Figure skater Kristi Yamaguchi was 5 years old when she watched Dorothy Hamill win gold at the 1976 Olympics. 16 years later in Albertville, Hamill wished Kristi luck just before she took the ice and delivered a gold-medal performance of her own, becoming the next American woman to win the ladies event.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Vin Diesel is a huge Dungeons & Dragons fan, who got to write the introduction to Wizard of the Coast's D&D 30th anniversary book.
  • The 3rd Edition version of D&D's Ravenloft setting, produced by Arthaus under license from WotC, was crafted almost entirely by Promoted Fanboy writers. Arthaus recruited them from the "Kargatane", a web-based group of fanzine writers. (TSR's original Ravenloft design team took its name from an in-game secret police force, the Kargat, and the Kargatane are their brainwashed mook underlings, so....)
  • The best Exalted freelance writers come from the forums; by 2011 it'd got to the point that the majority of the writing team and at least one of the developers had started on the forums.
  • Aurora Nikolaeva made a complete Age of Aquarius career from a fan to a leading developer.
  • A good number of folks now working in R&D of Magic: The Gathering come from the ranks of former players, up to and including the head of R&D, Mark Rosewater.

  • Kelly McKiernan, once an administrator/webmaster for the BIONICLE fansite and forum BZPower, was temporarily hired by LEGO (the makers of Bionicle) in 2007 to serve as webmaster for the official Bionicle while the then-current webmaster was on maternity leave. Even after the main webmaster returned to work in 2009, he stayed on at LEGO as the toy line's co-webmaster.
  • Joseph Kyde grew up a giant fan of Transformers through adulthood, and ended up on the Hasbro Design Team for the franchise.

  • When the original artist for Erfworld, Jamie Noguchi, left after the end of Book 1, then fan Xin Ye was hired as the new artist after she sent in fanart for one of the intermission updates.
  • Andrew Hussie of MS Paint Adventures wrassled up a sound team consisting of the best composers from the MSPA forum for Homestuck, who compose music for the flash animations. They now have their own indie record label under "What Pumpkin". Later, to widen the variety of art found in flash animations, Hussie gathered an art team to draw various pieces found in animations and sometimes static pages, and they also sell art prints (Ascended Fanart, basically.) of stuff the art team has done. All in all, Hussie's team almost entirely consists of fans with the exception of himself and Lexxie.
    • Also, for each official song that is released a piece of specialized album art accompanies it. Originally all the songs just had the main album artwork, and then there were pictures from the comic itself, but now most of the artwork is drawn by fans.
  • Jeffrey Wells wrote an extremely long and surprisingly good fanfic for the Narbonic comic. It was so good that author Shaenon Garrity not only featured it as filler during most of Narbonic's run but also wound up working with Jeff to write her later comic Skin Horse. Neither of them are exactly sure how, tho.
  • One fan of Enjuhneer cosplayed one of the characters at an anime convention, ran into the creator of the comic, and was put into the comic for being the first cosplayer that the creator had heard of.
  • For the first Electric Wonderland comic, Peter Paltridge enlisted a fan of some of his older series, Jesse Barboza, to provide drawings. One of Jesse's solo webcomics, Forever 16, also became a regular feature in Peter's periodical, BANG! Magazine.
  • The Life of Nob T. Mouse features a meta example where series writer/artist Zoe Robinson originally made The Life Of Nob T Mouse as a fanfiction comic for The Blobland Band, before meeting the franchise's creator, Hubert Schlongson, and winning ownership off him in a game of poker.
  • Nebula artist Toc made several pieces of fanart for the comic before becoming one of its official creators.

    Web Original 
  • Its Just Some Random Guy is known on YouTube for his I'm a Marvel... and I'm a DC videos that use Marvel and DC action figures to parody spots comparing Marvel and DC movies in the style of the "I'm a Mac, I'm a PC" ads. While not hired by Marvel or DC, he was hired by New York Comic Con to do bits in the style of his videos, which were approved by Marvel.
  • The case of the almighty union of They Might Be Giants and the Homestar Runner creators is an odd one. They're fanboys of each other and came together out of a mutual excitement for the other's work, with the result of the H* R creators doing music videos for TMBG, and TMBG writing and performing music for H* R.
  • Many of the contributors on That Guy with the Glasses started out as fans of The Nostalgia Critic. Almost all of them had been featured as Transmission Awesome's Awesome Blog of the Week before being picked up.
  • Many fashion bloggers, ie: Tavi Gevinson, Brian Boy.
  • James Rolfe is a huge film geek, particularly B and horror movies. He became an amateur filmmaker himself, and after one of his movies involving bashing video games turned him into an internet hit, most of his productions are available on his website, and he does film reviews and countdowns on both his site and Spike TV!
    • He's also making a short appearance in the upcoming remake of Plan Nine From Outer Space.
  • Arglefumph, famous for his Nancy Drew walkthroughs, entered a photo contest to have a cameo in the remake of "Secrets Can Kill." The results of said contest? Well, check out this video. Also qualifies as a funny moment.
  • YouTube personality Tobuscus wrote the immensely popular Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood Literal Trailer, which got more views than the original and attracted the attention of Ubisoft, which paid for him to go to E3 2011 and interview the Assassin's Creed: Revelations development team. As a result of this, he is now a featured performer at gaming conventions, and his fame has also landed him a voice acting gig.
  • Most people working for Rooster Teeth after the first few years fall into this to some degree or another. Most notably among them are Barbara Dunkelman, who organised fan events for the group before being officially hired, and Gavin Free, who, as a fan turned forum moderator turned intern turned Red vs. Blue director turned Achievement Hunter turned Rooster Teeth Creative Director, might just be one of the biggest examples in the entire history of this trope.
    • Red vs Blue itself had the cases of animation director Monty Oum, and writers-directors Miles Luna (seasons 11-13) and Joe Nicolosi (since 15).
    • "Mojojoj" is a very popular RWBY fan artist, noted for his insanely-fast-yet-very-well-drawn art work. He ended up becoming part of the crew to help out with the spin-off series, RWBY Chibi.
    • Another fan artist, Dishwasher, noted for drawing the cast with a robot \ Cyberpunk theme, was hired by Rooster Teeth to help with their mecha series gen:LOCK.
  • JonTron was a fan of Egoraptor's work long before they collaborated on Game Grumps.
  • Most of the current authors for the Whateley Universe started out by writing fanfic for the universe and then being asked to join the 'canon cabal'.
  • Worm has Interlude 19, focusing on a web forum within the story made up of thinly disguised versions of regular posters in the serial's comments section.
  • Actor Doug Jones (Hellboy, Pan's Labyrinth) expressed his fondness for Marble Hornets on Twitter. Years later, he would be cast as the Operator in the official Marble Hornets movie.
  • Many famous video game countdown artists (such as Speedyman 157 and Maverick Hunter Zero 75) started out as fans from works of other famous countdown artists (Speedyman 157 said that the reason he made countdowns was because he was a fan of peanut3423 and Maverick Hunter Zero 75 made countdowns because he was a big admirer of Itionobo 2).
  • Chuggaaconroy:
    • On Valentine's Day 2015, Nintendo of America tweeted Chuggaaconroy a picture of Kirby giving his trademark smile with the caption "I've absorbed your friendship!".
    • Chuggaaconroy himself cites ProtonJon as having been one of his primary inspirations to get into doing LPs in the first place. Now, not only is he one of the more notable modern LPers in his own right, he and Jon are friends and, alongside NintendoCapriSun, make videos and attend conventions together under the group name The Runaway Guys.
  • Paolo emailed Harvey Morenstein asking for advice on how to do his own epic meal. The cast and crew of Epic Meal Time road-tripped to his location and cooked with him.
  • On the video game music podcast Nitro Game Injection, Suraida, the newest co-host, was originally a dedicated listener. She ended up being invited onto the show for episode #142 to fill in for one of the other hosts, returning for a few more episodes before popular demand from fans led her to becoming a semi-regular co-host.
  • Loafy Molasses of food review group CultMoo started out as a mutual friend of Guerro and Herr Pink who brought them Wienerschnitzel one day for a "Deep Fried Whaaaaat" episode. He would end up joining the group. He lampshades it in the second McDonald's DFW episode.
    Loafy: Back when I was just a fan, and I was watching these videos, and I got so uber-jealous... That's how you should be feeling right now.
  • Game Grumps fan Ashley "Starexorcist" Swaby went from a fanartist of the show to a concept artist on Ross O'Donovan's upcoming series Gameoverse.

    Western Animation 
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender Big Name Fan Johanne Matte a.k.a. Rufftoon became a storyboard artist for the show.
    • Supposedly M. Night Shyamalan approached the people behind Avatar to create a live action movie because he was such a huge fan of the show. Based on the outcome, however, you could be forgiven for thinking the opposite.
    • Janet Varney, who plays the voice of Korra, was a big fan of Avatar before even hearing about the auditions for the lead role in the sequel. She said in an interview that after she auditioned for the part, she couldn't even watch the original show anymore because it would make her nervous about whether or not she'd land the role of Korra.
    • Seychelle Gabriel was also a fan of the cartoon before playing princess Yue in the live action movie then voicing Asami in The Legend of Korra.
    • Superstar women's tennis player Serena Williams is a huge fan of the show; she ended up voicing Iroh's kind prison guard in Book 3's The Day of Black Sun and one of the sages that finds Korra stranded on a beach with no memory in Book 2's Beginnings.
    • What about the guy who makes the Puppetbender shorts? On the Korra DVD, a special feature is an interview with the series' characters in puppet form.
    • A possible reverse case with The Legend of Korra, as both Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, the creators of the franchise, are big fans of Cowboy Bebop. And then they cast Steve Blum to voice the main antagonist of the first season, Amon.
  • Former NBA player Chris Bosh was a fan of X-Men: The Animated Series as a child. He later got to join the Marvel Universe when he voiced Heimdall in a Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. episode.
  • Raven Molisee's fanarts for Ed, Edd n Eddy got the attention of AKA Cartoons and landed her a job as storyboard animator for the show.
  • Fanartist Nina Matsumoto a.k.a. Spacecoyote drew a manga-styled picture of The Simpsons' cast. The pic quickly became an internet sensation, to the point where it caught the eyes of someone at Bongo Comics (publishers of The Simpsons' comic books), leading to her drawing an entire story ("Bartomu") for Bongo's 2008 Free Comic Book Day special (and promises of more work to come).
    • Including a Death Note parody for the recent Treehouse Of Horror, which managed to win an Eisner Award.
    • She is currently writing Yokaidan, a comic published through Del Ray Manga.
    • And as for individuals who have gone into a Simpsons sound booth, Michael Moore, Tony Blair and Daniel Radcliffe, to name just three big-name guest stars, are known to appreciate the program.
  • As this article revealed, a lot of the people working behind Godzilla: The Series grew up with Godzilla and were huge fans of the character. This is one of the big reasons why the cartoon turned out to be a lot more faithful to the original Japanese franchise compared to the American movie it was spun off from.
  • Anika Noni Rose has stated that working for Disney, in any capacity at all, was her big dream. Then she is given the part of Tiana, main character of The Princess and the Frog and also an official Disney Princess, which means that Tiana will forever be in the line up with Snow White, Jasmine, Ariel, Belle, Mulan, Pocahontas, Aurora and Cinderella. Magnificent.
    • Similarly, Zachary Levi stated in this making-of video for Tangled that getting to play the hero in a Disney film is like a dream he's still scared he'll wake up from.
      • Also from Tangled is Mandy Moore. She has said in interviews that she grew up loving the Disney Princesses and is thrilled about getting to play one. She has stated that Ariel was in fact her inspiration to start singing in the first place.
      • And Kristen Bell, who played Anna in Frozen. She was a huge fan of The Little Mermaid and Aladdin, saying that she "had one of them on a loop in my house at all times".
    • Also, Jon Cryer has stated that he has always wanted to play a role in a Disney movie, and was ecstatic when he landed the role of Dusty in Planes. Unfortunately for him, he has since been replaced by Dane Cook.
  • Animator Katie Rice was a big fan of The Ren & Stimpy Show growing up, she eventually got to animate for the Adult Party Cartoon version. However, given how her experience helped to end John K's career years later, we're keeping it at that.
  • The majority of the new voice actors for the Looney Tunes characters are big fans of the original theatrical shorts. Bob Bergen in particular went as far as to track down Mel Blanc himself for voice acting lessons.
  • Jason Marsden is a big fan of Disney; he even named his pets after Disney characters, and he got to play Kovu in Lion King 2. At the end of Behind the Microphone, he was really jazzed about how he can't believe he gets to be in a Disney movie.
    • He also got to be Max Goof in A Goofy Movie, a role that he continued in for years.
  • An episode of Tiny Toon Adventures, "Buster and Babs Go Hawaiian", was written by Renee Carter, Sarah Creef, and Amy Crosby, who at the time were only 13. As this article from the time reveals, they had sent the script to the show on a lark and by sheer blind luck, the script was actually read and sent along to Steven Spielberg, who decided to run with it. The show called attention to it both within the script (including a gag where Buster argues with the girls about his fear of planes) and in the promotion leading up to it.
  • Lauren Faust, who was a fan of My Little Pony toys as a child, was eventually hired to create a cartoon based on the toys, My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. It's even been said that the characters personalities are the ones she gave them while playing with the toys. Here's her collection.
    • This may explain the sheer number of Ascended Memes in the show and Faust being so protective of the fandom.
    • Before that, Lauren Faust was a big fan of The Powerpuff Girls that she begged to be on the production team, she eventually produced, wrote, and directed several episodes, and ultimately wedded Powerpuff Girls creator Craig McCracken.
    • In 2011, Teddy Antonio submitted premises to Hasbro and was called by current showrunner Meghan McCarthy to work on an idea for an episode where Fluttershy and Discord become roommates. He was ultimately credited for the episode's story, which eventually became "Keep Calm and Flutter On". Not only is Antonio a brony, but he was only 15 years old.
    • Established fandubbers Kira Buckland and Brittany Lauda got to voice match the characters they often fan-voiced in the Power Ponies app.
    • An OC of fan musician Andrew Stein AKA MandoPony appears in Issue #7 of the comics and the Equestria Games episode.
    • Broadway actress Lena Hall is a "proud pegasister", and guest starred as Countess Coloratura in the Season 5 episode The Main Attraction, singing "The Magic Inside".
    • The third soundtrack album, Songs of Harmony, includes a mashup of "Winter Wrap-Up" and "A True True Friend" featuring brony musician BlackGryph0n (Gabriel Brown).
    • Patton Oswalt became a fan of the show after watching it with his daughter and later landed the role of Quibble Pants in the episode "Stranger Than Fan Fiction".
    • Alexis Heule, a beneficiary of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, had her original character Angel Wings featured in Top Bolt.
  • Controversy arose around the Hungarian dub of South Park, when the fans noticed that the dubbing script for one of Season 9's episodes matched the translations of a Fan Sub created (way earlier) by a fan called "vito" word-for-word. Unfortunately, as copyright laws don't quite tend to favor unofficial fan works, the dubbers got away with the deal. But something still happened, as beginning from Season 13, vito has been working on the real scripts for the show as its official translator. And he's also credited under that name.
  • At various times on the bonus features of the Batman: The Animated Series DVDs, the various crew members admit to being "hardcore comic book geeks" who appreciated the old comics. One could say that the fact that they tried to make the series more like the comics they so loved was the main reason that the series is so well-done and fondly remembered.
    • To add to this, in one of the books about The Joker, Mark Hamill was asked to do the foreward. He mentions that the primary reason (in his mind) he was asked to play his most iconic role was due to showing off such enthusiasm for the project when he came in to voice the Corrupt Corporate Executive in "Heart of Ice".
  • Keith Scott was an enthusiast of Jay Ward cartoons and wrote a book about the history of Rocky and Bullwinkle. The same year, he became the voice of Bullwinkle in the 2000 film version.
    • Robert De Niro was a fan of the show and not only did he get to play Fearless Leader in that same film, but he also co-produced it.
  • Two die-hard childhood fans of Disney's Aladdin, Courtney Reed and James Monroe Iglehart, were cast as Jasmine and the Genie respectively in the premiere of the Screen-to-Stage Adaptation.
    • Similarly, The Little Mermaid fangirl Diana Huey got to play Ariel in the 2016-17 touring production of its stage musical. Her co-star Matthew Kacergis (Prince Eric) was also a Disney fanboy.
  • Pendleton Ward was a huge fan of The Simpsons growing up. He even had his mom drive him to Matt Groening's house to get advice on how to create a great animated TV show. Lo and behold, he got a job storyboarding on The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack after graduating from Cal Arts, and from there, created Adventure Time.
  • Ciro Neili was a huge fan of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles growing up; he even collected the comics before the 1987 cartoon premiered. He is now the show runner for the 2012 version on Nickelodeon, and he is even using original characters he designed when he was a kid.
  • When Christopher Lee read for his part as King Haggard for The Last Unicorn, he arrived carrying a copy of the book with notes on what parts he'd like to see kept in.
  • Jeff "Swampy" Marsh and Dan Povenmire are Marvel fans and were happy to include Marvel characters in a crossover episode of their cartoon. And then they got to do it again with Star Wars.
    • Speaking of Phineas and Ferb, the Season 4 episode "Act Your Age" was inspired by drawings of the characters as teenagers created by fan Ashley Michelle Simpson. Dan and Swampy brought on Simpson to help storyboard the episode, and hired her as a storyboard artist for their next show, Milo Murphy's Law.
  • Lin-Manuel Miranda, who grew up enthralled with Disney musical films, was hired to compose songs for Moana as well as the forthcoming Live-Action Adaptation of The Little Mermaid.
  • Tony Anselmo was always a fan of Donald Duck. He eventually became an animator at Disney. While working at Disney, he befriended Clarence Nash, the voice of Donald, who hand picked him to be his successor as the Duck's voice.
  • Gina Rodriguez used to watch Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego? as a child. She was also a fan of Rita Moreno and knew of her portrayal of Carmen on Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?. Gina now voices Carmen herself in the Carmen Sandiego Netflix series, she mentions in the foreword of Who in the World is Carmen Sandiego? she actually started crying when approached for the role.
  • According to this article, this was the reason Kevin Meaney played Aloysius Pig in Garfield and Friends, as well as Widow Hutchison in Rocko's Modern Life: he always dreamed of being a voice actor for a cartoon series.
  • This is the reason why Andy Samberg took a role in SpongeBob SquarePants: he was part of the show's Periphery Demographic when it first aired and became a big fan of it.

    Audio Dramas 
  • Simon Pegg is a big fan of the Strontium Dog comics, and got to voice Johnny in the CD adaptations.

  • The user Avan on the Furtopia forums - who is also mentioned under the video game folder in the Transcendence entry - is the likely, and only mentioned, candidate to join the staff in the proposition of taking over the free web-hosting services with his own server, with the only other option being to shut down the web-hosting services.
  • Jakayrta/Zarrelion became Cornova's beta/co-writer after he left a deep review on the first chapter of Poké Wars: The Incipience.
  • The Internet is full of this: if you're a fan of a long-standing website, you might be surprised at how many of the administrators and/or writers were once commenters on the same site.
  • garfieldodie was initially a big fan of Swing 123's fanfic Calvin and Hobbes: The Series, and he contributed a few ideas for "Confessions of a Prank-Loving Tiger". Starting with the next episode, he became the fic's cowriter.
  • Voltalia started off as a big fan of Kidfic before being brought on as the fanfic's co-author.
  • From the Yogscast:
    • In The Little Wood is supposedly this to the Yogscast after being noticed for his musical parody creation skills.
    • Strippin initially got to know Lewis Brindley and Simon Lane through community games, and eventually applied to do volunteer work for the site. Later, a paid position opened and he applied for the job, getting it because Lewis was pleased with his prior work. Eventually, he appeared on the Christmas livestreams with Martyn and Sparkles*, asking at that point if he could try making his own channel, getting the go-ahead. The rest is history.
    • William Strife was supposedly a Yognaut before he joined.
  • It is very common for administrators and moderators on many forums to be promoted ordinary members.
  • The Coca-Cola fan page on Facebook.
  • Captain Sparklez was a huge fan of SeaNanners when the former was doing his old channel. With the latter's help, he ended up becoming one of the more popular channels on YouTube and now plays games with the latter quite regularly, also knowing him in real life.
  • Anthony "Master" Le was a fitness consultant who started building his own Iron Man suits and releasing videos of the suit builds online in the lead-up to the release of Iron Man 2. His suits gained so much popularity that Jon Favreau took notice and hired him to do promotional events during the publicity tour for Iron Man 3.
  • Jacksepticeye started out as a big fan of the likes of Markiplier and PewDiePie. Eventually, as he started growing his own channel, his subscriber count soon hit the millions and he found himself befriending and often collaborating with the two, among others.

  • Ryan O'Connell used to drink lots of wine and read books about wine and, despite a total lack of formal training, he now operates O'Vineyards in the south of France and runs a wine blog that allows him to hang out with all the famous winemakers and wine writers he admired from afar.
  • In 2005, Steve Wade, a Tasmanian-based Saab fan, launched a blog about his favourite car. Six years, 5400 articles and 50,000 comments later, Saab formally credited SaabsUnited with helping to save the company, and employed him in their newly-formed global social media marketing team (based in Melbourne, Australia).
    • Unfortunately it didn't seem to last long or save the company.
  • A list of them appear in this Cracked article.
  • Gossip journalist David "Spec" Mc Clure was fascinated by Audie Murphy's military career and arranged to meet him when Murphy was filming his first supporting role in a film. The two became good friends, with Mc Clure co-writing To Hell and Back, both the book and the movie script, and acting as an informal press agent for Murphy. Murphy's second wife, Pamela, was also something of an Promoted Fangirl. She had been trying to meet him ever since she saw him on the cover of Life magazine in the mid-forties, and finally succeeded in the early fifties. They dated steadily while the divorce from his first wife was finalized, married shortly thereafter, and despite some rough periods remained married until his death.
  • When the Japanese casting director for Unbroken met with Miyavi, he had little knowledge of the film, its story, or anything about it. When she asked him who his favorite actor was, he immediately answered with Angelina Jolie...having absolutely no idea that she was the director behind the project, or that she was a fan of his and had sought him out personally for the role of Watanabe. He later jokingly said on an episode of Ellen that this was why he got the part.
  • Eddie Izzard got to be this for a time, when Monty Python gathered for a television interview, post-Chapman, and he sat among them. When he started answering their questions, they looked at him like some party-crashing stranger and shooed him offstage. But John Cleese refers to him as 'the Lost Python'.
  • Zodiac Starforce, artist Paulina Ganucheau is a huge fan of the magical girl genre, especially Sailor Moon. Just check out her Twitter feed...
  • Technically, every priest, pope or equivalent in any given religion can be considered a promoted fanboy.
  • The Make A Wish Foundation often grants their beneficiaries minor roles in movies and TV shows.

Alternative Title(s): Promoted Fangirl


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