Gabriel Gundacker/YouTube

Someone please help this man meet Richard Dreyfuss

He just wants a close encounter, Richard.


Audra Schroeder


Published Sep 22, 2015   Updated May 27, 2021, 10:44 pm CDT

These days, it’s easier than ever to connect directly with celebrities via social media, but one man is finding the object of his particular quest to be quite intangible. 

Gabriel Gundacker really wants to meet Richard Dreyfuss. In March, the Chicago-based musician and YouTuber released “I Wanna Meet Richard Dreyfuss,” which laid out his innocent curiosities about the Jaws actor. On Sunday, he released the followup, adding some urgency to the situation with “I Need to Meet Richard Dreyfuss,” a slow jam assisted by members of Gundacker’s soul band, Fat Night.  

Here, he establishes early on that his efforts have yielded no response from Dreyfuss, even though he’s tweeted at him. He’s in a “darker place” and just wants to meet him face to face; he knows the Lost in Yonkers star has some “free time” on his hands. 

Reached by phone, Gundacker says he first took note of the Oscar winner in eight grade, after watching Jaws, American Graffiti, and Close Encounters of the Third Kind in a short span of time. But even though he’s now devoted two songs to the cause, created art of his face merging with Dreyfuss’s, and emblazoned shirts and hats with the actor’s name, he doesn’t want people to think he’s a maniac, or using Dreyfuss for any “Internet celebrity.”  

“It is still very real,” Gundacker says of his admiration. “It can be construed as sort of a creepy obsession, especially from that video, so it’s sort of in this uncanny valley of, obviously I really would love to meet him, I think he’s an awesome actor. But also there’s some overexaggeration about it.” 

Gundacker says he “almost” met Dreyfuss in L.A. at a screening of Down and Out in Beverly Hills, but he didn’t show up. He’s also been in touch with Dreyfuss’s son, Ben, and says he was “very kind and playful about it,” though it’s not clear if the video ever reached Richard. (We emailed Dreyfuss’s publicist for comment on Gundacker’s quest but did not hear back.) 

“It’s really for Richard,” he said of his crusade. “More so than he probably wants. “Two R&B hits about him and no response. What are you gonna do?”

That’s the big question now. Will Gundacker create a trilogy of songs for Dreyfuss? How far will he go? 

“Hopefully the next song is about how I met Richard Dreyfuss,” he said. “That would bring some nice closure, you know, Return of the Jedi-style. 

H/T AV Club | Screengrab via Gabriel Gundacker/YouTube 

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*First Published: Sep 22, 2015, 11:00 am CDT