Donald Glover has seemingly done everything there is to do creatively.
From his start as a YouTube comedian with “DerrickComedy” to his Grammy-winning musical work as Childish Gambino and Emmy-winning acting, writing, and directing in the FX series Atlanta, Glover has had a hand in more acclaimed creative projects by the age of 34 than many creators do in their whole careers. On top of all that, he bought a row of mansions in Los Angeles and turned them into a series of animal orphanages!
Alright, that’s not true, but he is starring in a Star Wars movie this year. And that seems like enough for now.
Donald Glover Net Worth: $12 Million
The Early Years: 1983-2006
Glover was born at Edwards Air Force Base in California on September 25, 1983, though he would grow up in Stone Mountain, Georgia. Always a creative thinker, Glover attended high school at Dekalb School of the Arts, where he was voted “Most Likely to Write for The Simpsons,” before moving north to attend NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Glover graduated from Tisch in 2006 with a degree in dramatic writing, but it was his comedic instincts and expressive acting style as part of YouTube channel “DerrickComedy” that garnered him his initial breakthrough. That same year, with a series of well-produced “DerrickComedy”/”CollegeHumor” collaborations under his belt and an impressive Simpsons spec-script handy, Glover was able to parlay a meeting with Tina Fey into a writing job on her show 30 Rock.
While some may view Donald Glover’s meteoric rise as a terrifying indicator of how accurately high school kids can predict career trajectories, it may well also be proof that Donald Glover was probably just always going to be famous. Glover would write for Fey at 30 Rock until 2009 when a starring role as Troy Barnes on fellow-NBC show Community would become his primary focus. Glover starred on the show until its fifth season, departing in 2014 after 89 episodes to focus on personal issues and a desire to “be on [his] own.”
Following a series of rap mixtapes and increasingly publicized performances under his Childish Gambino moniker, a name derived from a Wu Tang Clan name generator, Glover signed to Glassnote records in 2011 and released his debut album Camp soon after. His second album, Because the Internet, was released in December of 2013 and accompanied by a 72-page screenplay titled Clapping for the Wrong Reasons. The album was well-received, nabbing a Grammy-nom for Best Rap Album and being certified Gold by the RIAA.
Following his departure from Community, Glover’s increasingly-successful musical career and ever-ballooning celebrity have allowed him to branch out into a series of major film roles. While he had previously written and acted in DerrickComedy’s 2009 Mystery Team movie, Glover would more recently act in such films as The Martian and Spiderman: Homecoming, and is set to star as Lando Calrissian in the previously mentioned new Star Wars vehicle, Solo. While 2017 saw immense critical success find Glover for both his award-winning FX comedy Atlanta and his genre-bending R&B album Awaken, My Love!, it doesn’t seem he has any plans of slowing down anytime soon. 2018 has him slated to write and act as showrunner for an animated Deadpool show, while 2019 has him slated to voice the role of Simba in a Jon Favreau-led The Lion King remake.