Childish Gambino Talks 'Titanfall' Game, Reddit, and Not Quitting Acting Career: SXSW Q&A

Hal Horowitz/Invision for Microsoft/AP Images
Childish Gambino at the "Titanfall" on Xbox One launch event at SXSW on Monday, March 10, 2014, in Austin, TX

Xbox celebrated the arrival of “Titanfall,” one of the year’s most highly anticipated first person shooters, with a huge launch party in Austin, Texas Monday (March 10) night. The Microsoft Studio on Congress Avenue was lined with large flat screen televisions and Xbox One systems hooked up to the game that partygoers could pick up and play, as well as featured performances by Donald “Childish Gambino” Glover and Run DMT.

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Glover, who arrived in Austin for SXSW the day before, sat down for a brief chat before taking the stage later that night. He’s got a script FX just bought, is a light gamer, and yeah, there’s more music on the way, too.

Billboard: I noticed a picture of you and Alexis Ohanian, the co-founder of Reddit, hanging out last night. Are you a Reddit user?

Donald Glover: Yeah. There’s a subreddit of me. I did an AMA once.

How often do you check your own subreddit?

Not a lot, somebody told me about it. I guess I checked it twice. It’s just so interesting to me, we live in a weird time where it’s like, “Oh, there’s a community about me!” I had no idea.

What do you think of this whole event? Do you own an Xbox?

It’s weird. People keep asking if I’m a gamer and feel like I don’t really qualify myself

 as a gamer. I feel like if somebody asked, “Are you a gamer?” and I said “Yeah,” I’d just be doping myself. Definitely when I was 16, I was really into like “Street Fighter” tournaments and I bought the books. I was really into “Tomb Raider.” I’d dream of it. But now, it’s just too much. It sucks!

This game [“Titanfall”] is really good, especially the campaign mode, where you can play with other people. The best thing I saw is that once you’re getting the shit kicked out of you, you can eject and the shoot from the sky! We’re trying to see if we can get it to work on the bus, where we’ve got an Xbox One. We also play “FIFA” and “Street Fighter.”

Upcoming projects?

Three big things. Now that the album’s [“Because The Internet”] out, I’ve written the script

 to “Atlanta” and FX bought the script, which is done. And I really like it, I’m really proud of it. It’s a show that I feel like people are going to like. But I’m still like working on that. I’m looking towards the next Childish Gambino project, we have a couple of things that we have going on there.

In the short film you did a few months ago, “Clapping For The Wrong Reasons” you’re with Trinidad James, Chance the Rapper and Flying Lotus. You seem to be at the center of an up and coming community of musicians. What does this do for you artistically?

I’m really lucky. I’m really lucky that I was around at this time. I always think like, if I was around during pyramids times I would be useless. I really would. But I guess I’m just lucky that I get to be around them.

It’s really cool because you get to see how they all work. It really helped me understand, I like doing things my way, and to not be afraid of that. To be able to document how they work.

So it’s not the end of Donald Glover the actor then, huh?

Oh no. I think the biggest, shittiest thing that came out of me leaving “Community” is people being like “He wants to go do music.” I think people think I hated “Community,” and I just wanted more time to some other projects that I felt like if I didn’t do now, it would be a detriment. But I would love to make a film. I’d love to make a video game, more apps, I just want to do a bunch of stuff.