Many of Hollywood’s biggest comedy stars were hired by Lorne Michaels to become cast members of “Saturday Night Live” early in their careers. but he doesn’t always get it right, and in addition to Lisa Kudrow, “Community” and “Atlanta” lead, Donald Glover, was rejected after a failed audition, not just once but twice.
Though it may be hard to imagine anyone turning down the effortlessly funny Glover, that’s exactly what Michaels did in both 2007 and 2009, according to Glover himself. He discussed his rejections in an interview with GQ, but rather than lament what might have been, the multi-faceted Glover — who is an actor, musician, and director — seems grateful. “I dodged so many bullets,” Glover told the magazine. “Me being on ‘SNL’ would’ve killed me.” While he may have wanted to join the series badly at the time, hindsight has a way of bringing clarity.
“If I got on ‘SNL,’ my career wouldn’t have happened,” he said. And that’s no exaggeration, as his starring role in “Community” came the same year as his second audition, which was followed in 2016 by the award-winning “Atlanta,” which he also created. But he’d eventually get his shot on the 30 Rock stage, returning to “SNL” in 2018 to play host following his first Emmy Award win.