August 3, 2021

Delivering joy in Hollywood

Amos Glick ’90 creates intrigue as ‘Dennis the Mailman’ in hit TV series.

In a 30-year career as an entertainer, Amos Glick ’90 has learned to discard unsuccessful auditions like a sheet of two-ply toilet paper.

“When you’re using it, when you’re involved with it, it’s an extremely important thing to have, Glick said. “But when you’re done with it, you don’t keep it around.

“It’s not about dismissing the importance of the audition or the job,” he cautions. “It’s about not giving the opportunity a lot of power, otherwise you get very attached to it.”

Five years ago, Glick moved on from a nine-year run performing as a clown in Le Rêve at Wynn Resorts on the Las Vegas Strip to be within an earshot of the glitz and glam of Hollywood. His toilet paper analogy has been an effective tool in the 60 auditions he’s earned since making the transition. Of those auditions, he was booked to appear on four television shows and considered for roles performing alongside actors Al Pacino and Kelsey Grammar.

“Either you fit the suit or look the part to the casting director, but a lot of the time it has nothing to do with that,” Glick said. “Of course talent is involved, but I know for a fact that I’ve submitted some of my best auditions, and I didn’t get the part.”

Year five in Hollywood has been a turning point in his eclectic career as an actor, musician, producer and songwriter. In fall 2020, Glick was cast to play Dennis the Mailman in the popular television series WandaVision, a Marvel Studios production based on characters that appear in Marvel Comics publications.

Despite having a minor role on six of the series’ nine episodes, the show made him an internet sensation and drew praise from WandaVision Director Matt Shackman, for his contributions to the show’s success.

“They say it takes 5-10 years to get established in Los Angeles,” Glick said, echoing advice often handed down to ambitious actors when they pursue their dreams of making it in Hollywood. “In year five, I had a recurring role in a popular television series, so that’s more than on par.

“My audition rate has drastically picked up.”

Just don’t call WandaVision his big break. Even with the increased attention and increase in job opportunities, he is reminded often that acting is a humbling experience.

“I’ve been working in entertainment for my entire adult life and have even appeared in several national commercials, TV shows and some indie films—but nothing has really come of it,” Glick said. “Many of my Hollywood roles so far are one-liners. There are plenty of times I’ve wanted or should have quit—and I haven’t.”

Nothing more to see here: ‘I’m just the mailman’

Even though WandaVision aired last spring, he hasn’t given up on performing as a mailman either.

In response to fans who have speculated whether his character had a hidden purpose, he wrote the song, “Just a Messenger,” earlier this year. The song is now accompanied by a comedic music video which he directed and produced with a creative team from Las Vegas. Accompanied by hype men, Glick sings and raps words that tease out the intrigue in his role.

Not willing to just see where the Hollywood tide will take him, Glick is reveling in the moment and sharing his joyful approach with fans. He is an entertainer at heart, and a savvy one.

“To be an actor is to own your own business, and that business is yourself,” said Rachel Friedman, head of the Tisch Drama Office of Career Development and Alumni Engagement at New York University, in a story published recently by U.S. News and World Report. “You are that business.”

Glick often writes his own music, paying homage to his colleagues or offering comedic takes based on current events. Last year, at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic he wrote the song “My Carona,” a parody of The Knack’s song, “My Sharona,” and produced an accompanying music video.

“The reason I made this latest music video is to see if I can get a little more mileage out of a role and give fans a shout out,” Glick said. “This is new territory for me, as far as the attention, but I write songs all the time about people I work with. I entertain people that way.”

With nearly 5,000 views, the song is his most popular video to date.

“For this moment in my life, I want to see if that instinct can pay off on a much bigger scale,” he said. “Maybe it will turn some heads.”

A biology major-turned actor

Glick said his path to the WandaVision set was nurtured by his time performing on stage at Earlham but was never a theatre major—not even a minor.

He instead earned a degree in biology having developed a passion for social justice and environmental issues while growing up in Massachusetts and attending summer camps in Vermont.

“I knew Earlham had one of the best biology departments in the country,” he said.

On Earlham’s campus, he participated in the launch of a recycling program and the Earlham Environmental Action Committee, which culminated in him serving as a co-chair for the Earth Day Arts Committee during his senior year. He produced art exhibits, a variety show and a final night concert as part of his leadership in the event.

Those experiences encouraged him to pursue additional opportunities in the arts, beginning with Tony-award winning San Francisco Mime Troupe. After graduating, he trained with them before joining as a collective member and performing with other theatre companies in the northern California Bay Area.

Now 30 years since earning his degree from Earlham, his resume includes dozens of professional credits, from sketch comedy to improv, to directing his own independent films, to voiceovers on video games, corporate video production work, and acting on national commercials, films and television.

Now that he’s turned his focus toward Hollywood, he’s becoming more confident in his craft and widening his resume. Besides WandaVision, he also appeared in one episode of Marvel Studio’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, and Just Roll With it, a family television series that aired on the Disney Channel. He also was cast for a part in Hollywood, which streams exclusively on Netflix, but his character was cut from the show before airing.

“I’m learning to be more confident in my work and take the onus off the finished project when I audition for roles,” Glick said. “When I first came to Hollywood, a casting director encouraged me to use the audition space like a workshop, not just as an interview for the job.”

“When I walk into an audition, I’m actually walking into my studio, choosing my canvas, picking out my paints and slashing out the initial colors and outlines. That approach has given me that permission to come in and play around. I’m stronger and more confident in that way now.”

When I walk into an audition, I’m actually walking into my studio, choosing my canvas, picking out my paints and slashing out the initials and colors and outlines. That approach has given me that permission to come in and play around. I’m stronger and more confident in that way now.

Amos Glick

Story written by Brian Zimmerman. Photos by Michele Hengeveld of MHA Photography.

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