Not all Bill Murray sightings in the wild end on a note of whimsy. The comedic icon has always had a fiery temper, and it may have recently gotten the better of him after he allegedly assaulted a famed photographer in a Martha's Vineyard restaurant.
The victim is 71-year-old Peter Simon, who is a well-respected and award-winning photographer, not a member of the paparazzi crowd. Murray apparently did not know this. Peter is the brother of iconic singer Carly Simon, and the siblings grew up on Martha's Vineyard, and are considered island royalty.
So what? That doesn't mean Murray wants his picture snapped by the guy, and the former SNL Not Ready for Prime Time Player made that fact very well know. By his own account, Simon was sent off to Lola's a restaurant in the town of Oak Bluff. His assignment was to shoot some Bill Cunningham-like images of 'interesting people'. Peter began inconspicuously shooting a couple at dinner not noticing or caring who their dinner companion was.
Though, unfortunately and unbeknownst to him, it was Groundhog Day and Caddyshack star Bill Murray. When the couple noticed Simon snapping the photos, Bill Murray reportedly became very upset. He believed that Peter was a scum bucket member of the dreaded paparazzi crowd. Which couldn't have been further from the truth.
Simon claims Murray came up and shoved him. Peter, who is in his early 70s and obviously not a big Ghostbusters fan, is described as slight and fragile. After taking the images, he stepped into the alley to check what he'd captured. Murray approached the photographer. Peter asked, 'Do you know who I am?' And to that, Bill replied, 'No, do you know who I am?'
Simon had no clue who was facing off with him in the alley over these seemingly innocent photographs. And that apparently set Murray off. He replied to Peter, 'Well, you should!' He then proceeded to dump a glass of water all over Simon and his camera. About the assaulting encounter, Simon said this.
"It was humiliating. I'm like the peace and love person."
Apparently Peter has no images of Bill Murray because that wasn't the subject of his lens on this particular evening. It's possible that Peter is embellishing his story just a little bit to bring some attention to his new photography book 'Martha's Vineyard: To Everything There is a Season.' It mostly contains landscape shots, but there are a few snaps of celebrities, which Simon says were all arranged, once again claiming he's not a paparazzi.
Peter goes onto say that he doesn't want any kind of ongoing fight with Bill Murray. Murray did, however, complain to the restaurant owners. They have now banned the photographer from Lola's for a year. He says this about getting the boot.
"They knew what I was doing there, but they sided with Murray because he's a celebrity."
Peter Simon is no stranger to celebrity. Aside from his very famous musician sister, his father, Richard Simon, founded Simon & Schuster. Simon first told Showbiz 411 of his personal encounter with Murray. The publication is claiming that Bill Murray definitely owes this man an apology.