We have an interview for you with Simone van Galen. She runs a fan page for Annie. You can also find her on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr! Let's start by introducing Simone: "I’m Simone and as people call me Simy on the interwebs. Currently studying Mediadesigner MBO4 at Mediacollege Amsterdam which is an amazing school where I learn to do more in crafting and art and design which I can also use into my fan site. I have done some design things for Annie as well. I think I’m allowed to say it and if I wasn’t well I’m sure she will tell me after reading this, but before she posted the photo of her and Ritter as Mary Poppins she asked me to Photoshop the image of her. Some people believed it was real. But there are other things I do but I can’t talk about that here."
She's a big fan of Annie Wersching and she met her! She shared our story with us. And we're very happy about that! Thanks Simone for chatting with us and we're glad to work together! Let's talk about meeting Annie!
About Annie Wersching
The first series Simone ever saw Annie in that caught her attention was when Annie was on 24. The series with Kiefer Sutherland in the lead. She went through a tough year that time. When she watched the first few episodes of season 7, Annie was this character that stood up for herself and then slowly changed as she worked more with Jack. Annie reminded Simone in a some way of who she was as a person as well. It wasn't just about the character Annie played. Simone and Annie have freckels, are an only child, have blue eyes. And there was something about Annie that was different! Of course I asked Simone what liked so much about Annie.
She told it's the fact that she’s so different from what you usually expect of a “ Hollywood “ actor. She’s not the bitchy like "I’m everything and you lot are nothing" type of person.
Simone tells: "In a recent interview she did with Stlmag (A magazine from St. Louis. This is the place Annie was born) she said this (which is exactly what I believe too):
' I feel like I can be on set and work with all these different, awesome people, but I still maintain that down-to-earth, Midwest thing that is kind of hard to put your finger on. I can’t tell you how many times people are like, “You are so chill.” They’re always like, “You must be a Midwesterner, huh?” That happens a lot..’
She is down to earth towards her fans. Which is a big plus and I see it every time. As I run her fan site I get a lot of fans who wish to leave her a message and some are very scared, so when I see that I am like, okay, so I add them to a conversation with her and then they open up towards her and she sometimes responds and that’s the most heartwarming feeling ever. I as a fan am so proud of being a fan of such a heart warming human being."
I asked Simone to tell us about that moment she heard Annie was announced as a guest for Insurgence 8: "Now this is actually a long, long answer. She was announced in May 2016. A few days before I posted this image which said” Never never give up on your dreams”. I tweeted this at random on my fan page and I remember her liking that. Of course I have no idea if it was related to it but I do know that not very long after, she was announced for the con. I remember getting 10/15 messages from fans going insane over the fact that I could meet her and I was like: "I must go". When I told my parents they were like.. "You're already going to London. So why not make a side trip." But I didn't know if I would have issues affording it. But then an amazing friend of mine Kelly Mayer asked me in what hotel the con was being held so I told her it was the Hilton and she asked for my email. I had no clue what that was about so I sent her the info and then she messaged me back saying she booked a hotel room at the Hilton for me. It was crazy! so If I can thank one person not enough it would be her cause without her it would have never happened.
The reason I was already going to London was because Michael Malarkey was announced for several gigs in London / Manchester and that was my original plan to visit those and not the convention. So I had everything booked for Manchester and had to re book so much for this. But in the end it all worked out and spent too much. My parents helped me out because they knew that this was my dream. I got all the autographs which were included in my package and I let those get signed for Kelly cause she deserved that."
Simone got photo ops and autographs and a coffee lounge! The last one was probably for her the most weird one of it all. Because she runs a fan page, she was sitting in this room with all these fans and Annie walked in and said: “ Hi, I know you “ and then winked and everyone looked at Simone like.. wtf.. Even though some people knew. But for her that was strange.
Meeting Annie Wersching
It's time to talk about meeting Annie! So I started by asking Simone about the queue: "For the photo’s there was a huge line yes. Her photo op was cheap so I figured she would get a lot of people. And I had some issues with it to because due to all my former plans my train would leave at 14:35 on Sunday. I had to get everything done on Saturday but I was sadly out of luck on the queue pass or something they had so I was very bumped. But in the end a friend of mine helped me out and after a bit of an argue I was allowed to skip the queue and go on Saturday and get my photo’s done. So yeah the queue was long but it was fine for me. But I do think I held the line because I had 8 photo ops and around 12 autographs.. Which 4 of them were for friends, two for me and the rest for fans."
Of course we want to know if Simone talked to Annie! "I did. At the coffee lounge I was super nervous but I did ask her a question. I don’t exactly remember what I asked anymore as it was such a blur and I was shaking a little too much. But she said she “ knows me ‘ and then as she asked where everyone was from she skipped me because she already knew the answer. Then at the Q&A I asked a question and she called out my name which was unexpected so I was like… OH SHIT. I froze.. and then I said: "Now you’ve done it." She laughed and so did I. People said I should hug her but we knew we couldn’t as they wouldn’t allow us which was sad. But at the photo ops she said 'Hi' and we talked about which poses we would do and she was so funny and amazing about my ideas and her own ideas were crazy. It was amazing. At the autographs we spoke about Michael’s gig in London and about why I let her sign my DVD of 24 and I asked her if she minded that I would DM her at times because as a fan, it’s always extremely weird and scary to tweet a celeb. Because she follows me I DM her at times and yeah, I dunno, I always felt like I spammed her.
Hence the photo op! She asked me about my night and when I was leaving. And the last bit actually made me a bit upset because a part of me didn’t want to leave that day but I had to. I also told her that some of the autographs were for other fans (24 fans) who are like me big Renee fans! And then she asked if I went the year before to Insurgence and told her I did. As last I told her to write something on the photo which had the message on and she wrote Bad girl but only after talking to her best friend who was sitting by her. It was amazing and then she hugged me again like she did before at the photo’s. As I walked away I cried because then I realized it would take a long time before I see her again. But as I walked into the hallway, I walked into her best friend Ritter who’s absolutely amazing and he told me about how and where he met her and it was so cool to speak to him. He’s the sweetest and I hugged him too."
And we also want to know what's the best thing about meeting Annie: "Her kindness, how sweet she truly is. She is like how I expected her to be but just so much more. I always say she’s a shining light in a way and I got to know her somehow. A superhero. ( On youtube you can find a birthday video I created for her birthday with the song Superhero from The Script and she received a HeroGoody from me as well) But I guess you can say that what I liked the most was the moment when she hugged me at the photo’s and when we took those. It still feels surreal sometimes."
Simone was very very nervous about meeting Annie: "The day before I went to meet her I was walking back from the gig with a friend of mine and I told her that I was very scared and nervous for meeting Annie even if Michael Malarkey had said that night that I should have fun meeting her and that she’s amazing. (He said they had been exchanging texts. The day after Annie told me that as well). Even though I believed that, I got scared too. “ What if she’s the total opposite of what I expect? Or what if she has no idea who I am when I stand before her. “ Of course the last one was still a question. Specially cause I imagined her not really knowing who I was. I mean, she has a pretty big fan base. It felt strange to think that she would remember me. Funny fact that she actually did know at the end. I remember telling everyone that. It was crazy."
Simone's fan page!
I asked Simone to tell us a bit more about her fan page for Annie: "My fan Twitter started after I had a conversation with a friend of mine. It was two days before episode 7.08 At the time I already had a page called SalvatoreMother which was like a roleplay page to write about her character. Because I loved the story line of her character had on the show but I knew it wasn’t fully completed so I always wrote more. Then my best friend and I both noticed that I was so busy with her that a fan site was something I really wanted to do. I already had a fan site for Michael Malarkey and Rick Cosnett at the time who I also adore. But with her I was always so scared to approach her that I tweeted her with my Lily account but almost never my personal. Then as I spoke to another friend of mine as well I decided to create the Twitter at first. Then as she runs one of the big The Vampire Diaries sites she tweeted my page out and it got a few followers and that was it. Then, as the episode 7.08 aired, I stayed up all night. Annie sort of tweeted these things like hints on what may happen. I just felt like something bad would happen and with this one it felt really strong. So as the episode aired, I was right and she ( spoiler alert) died in the episode. I tweeted her that her IMDB had two more episodes listed and then she followed me.. It was 4AM ( Dutch…… yay.. ) and I had a test the next day but I had so much adrenaline that I never slept.
On the first of January I launched my fan site. It may not have hundreds of people who visit it but the page is running and has helped me in ways no one ever saw coming. And it’s helping the fans. I even did a magazine for fun and launched that in February 2016 but the joke was that exactly a month later another edition would launch which was the Fan edition with messages for her birthday! it was perfectly planned!"
Simone is sometimes in contact with Annie: "I do keep it on a professional level as in: When it’s important she knows something, I tell her on occasions. But I never tell anyone what she tells me. That’s because it’s private so you keep it private. But on occasions, she tweets me on the timeline and that's fun. What I call downside.. are messages from people calling me words or say I must do this or that.. but I ignore that. But sometimes it affects me. Because I want to be there for everyone and help everyone but I can’t always do that."
The plan is to make the page even bigger than it is now. Simone's friend is also a big Annie fan. They are planning on creating a fansite for Marvel's Runaways as well! (Annie is on that show now).
We're hoping that Annie will do many other cons and that we'll all get a chance to see her. And of course we also hope that Simone will soon get the chance again to see Annie!