EXPIRED: 07/07/10 – Glenn Shadix, 58, survived being in a movie with Winona Ryder and electroconvulsive aversion therapy in an unsuccessful attempt to stop being gay.
What he didn’t survive was blunt force trauma to his head after an accidental fall in his condo.
Shadix, born in backwoods Bessemer, Alabama, always wanted to be an actor. He studied with absurdist playwright-director Arnold Powell while in college and quickly moved to New York City and, by the late 70’s, moved to Hollywood to pursue his dream.
His ‘feminine ways’ got him cast as Gertrude Stein in an odd little stage play and even though his agent warned him against doing it, he took the role anyway, An actor’s got to eat, right?
Well, lucky for Shadix, nut-job Tim Burton was in the audience one night and he liked what he saw. He cast Shadix immediately as Otho in Burton’s upcoming “Beetlejuice.”
Otho, an interior designer, who under the direction of the home’s new owners, transformed the home’s interior into something ghastly in the eyes of the deceased. Shadix especially killed when he did the “Day-O” dance, one of the highlights of the flick.
Glenn Shadix also had roles in other Tim Burton productions. He played the voice of the mayor in “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” and Senator Nado in the 2001 remake of “Planet of the Apes.
In 2005, Shadix was cast as the Brain and Monsieur Mallah in the Teen Titans animated series. He also did voice work for episodes of Jackie Chan Adventures and Justice League Unlimited. He reprised his Nightmare Before Christmas role in the sequel, Oogie’s Revenge, and the video game Kingdom Hearts II.
On TV he was in the HBO drama Carnivàle, Seinfeld, in which he played Jerry’s landlord, and other shows.
He retired back to Bessemer, Alabama in 2007, purchased a Queen Anne style Victorian era home and redid the whole thing as only a southern gay interior designer could. Maybe that was a little too much for the neighbors. The house was completely destroyed in a fire a year later.
Shadix told reporters, “I have lost my dream.” The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
When he died he was set to begin rehearsals for History Boys, the award winning Broadway play by Alan Bennett. It would have been Shadix’s first time back in Birmingham Theatre since he appeared in Boys in the Band in 1973.