Donegal man stars on 'Walk of Fame'
It was a case of exactly the right place at the right time when Donegal man Craig Magee stumbled his way onto one of the biggest talk shows in America.
The 25-year-old from Kirkstown, Letterkenny was walking down Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles with his girlfriend on Wednesday when he passed a television camera that had been set up beside the Hollywood ‘Walk of Fame’ star honouring comedian and talk-show host, Ellen DeGeneres.
The pair, who had flown into the city the previous night, suddenly heard DeGeneres call out, “Hey, yes, you with the H&M bag, what did you buy?”, and realised they were live on camera.
DeGeneres was “monitoring” her Walk of Fame star while her show was on the air, having been presented with it just a week earlier.
“A lot of people leave things at the star like an altar, so if you want to leave a t-shirt or something, that would be great,” DeGeneres quipped.
With that, Magee promptly took off his t-shirt and put it in the ‘tips jar’, prompting wild cheers and cat calls from the predominantly female studio audience.
“I just whipped my top off and put it into the jar. I can barely remember doing it, I was that nervous,” said Magee, who is still holidaying in California.
“I could hear them all shouting in the background, so I took out one of my new t-shirts and put it on. It was a Jim Morrison t-shirt, so Ellen asked me if I was a fan of his, and I had to admit he didn’t know who he was,” he laughed.
“What’s your name?” DeGeneres asked, before declaring, “You’re my new favourite person.”
The television host then asked Magee and his girlfriend, Jayne McCanny (24) from Edinburgh, to lie down beside the star so her cameraman could photograph them beside it.
“That’s my Christmas card,” DeGeneres said.
But the excitement didn’t end when they came off the air.
“They put us in a car and took us to the Warner Brothers studio and brought us into the live show,” said Magee. “Ellen was still on when we got there, but we met her when she came off. She thanked us and said we had really made the show that day.”
The couple – who are en route to New Zealand for a year – were then given a Google Nexus tablet computer each, along with $200 in gift vouchers.
Speaking from LA, Magee had nothing but praise for the television star, describing her as “very down to earth”. “She took time to talk to everybody and was really, really nice. I’m just pissed off I didn’t get a picture taken with her,” he said.