Alex was born September 30th, 1989 in Los Angeles, California to Howie and Terry Mandel. He has two sisters and is the middle child. Growing up, Alex was very different than he is today, and not just because he has more hair... At a very young age, Alex had a severe stutter and at one point completely quit speaking altogether for almost a year. After a lot of speech therapy, he overcame it and eventually began talking without the stutter. He was left very shy and afraid to be in front of people. Any time there was a school play or some reason for him to go in front of people, he would hide away and cry. This went on for years. He was diagnosed with a severe case of ADHD and it made it very hard for him to concentrate and complete school work. Seeing his dad have some problems as well he was able to relate. His Dad would use comedy to make him feel better and Alex felt he could try doing the same. Alex Forced himself to be more social and and even signed up for community theater. It was there that Alex realized that not only did he have a talent to entertain, it also made him feel amazing. He was Hooked!
With a newfound passion to entertain people, Alex approached his parents and told them that he wants to start acting. His dad, being in that industry, knew how hard it can be. He felt that at the moment, a good education is very important. He told Alex that at the age of 16 you'll have your Driver License and you can take yourself to auditions if you're still interested. At age 15 Alex had his first taste of real on-screen acting with a regular role on a sitcom on Bravo. It was his dad's show called "Hidden Howie, The Private Life of a Public Nuissance." It was his dad's show so he knew that he could film during the summer and not miss any school. Alex continued to do tv work as long as it didn't conflict with school. 16 came around and Alex was very excited. He told his dad that he was still interested and now he can go to auditons himself. His dad told him to wait until he's 18 and at that point he will be an adult and can decide then if he still wants to do it. Alex continued with more acting gigs here and there and graduated from High School in 2008 with a class of 25 students (something his father never did). Alex didn't want to go to college and realistically barely made it through High School. His dad convinced him to at least try going to College. He took many jobs in the production industry as well ranging from Production assistant, to Post-Production, to getting certified as an Editor to start Editing for NBC, all the way to working in Casting. His dad stressed the importance of learning every aspect of production, so he did.
Alex attended California State University Northridge with a major in Theater. He did something that he told himself he would never do, he joined a fraternity, Alpha Epsilon Pi. In the fraternity he flourished. Quickly after being accepted, he began taking chair positions and running committees. During his time there he was PR chair and Philanthropy Chair. He broke records and helped bring his fraternity chapter to new heights. He set the record for the most money raised for a charity cause for his whole fraternity Nationally. He was on the cover of their magazing for the amazing achievment.
After 2 years of College, Alex began becoming more successful not only as an actor, but also as a producer. One of his professors in the Theater department called him in to her office. She was also an actor and said that Alex should just leave and pursue his dream. He could always come back if he wants to finish, but he will regret missing opportunites he was currently being offered. Alex left college. He didn't want to leave schooling altogether though. He join Stella Adler Acting Academy in Hollywood to better his craft and teach him new techniques. Stella Adler has very short school terms and would allow working students to leave for extended periods of time to go work.
Alex became a regular role on many prank shows such as, Howie Do It, Scare Tactics, Destination Fear, Freak Encounters, Deal With It, etc. He had also found a website called Stickam.com where he could broadcast himself live and entertain the world. He started out getting 5-10 viewers and after almost a year and a half, he had built a following and would broadcast for 20,000 viewers a night. Stickam made Alex an offer to have the first stickam funded show backed by sponsors. Alex was all set to begin shooting , but then one week before it went live he received a call from Stickam. Their site lost all it's funding and the whole site is going to be shut down. Alex was upset and didn't know where he would go from there.
Alex got an auditon for a tv show and it had to be a weird character that he taped at home. They asked him to upload it to YouTube so he can send the link and he did. He kept the video public and people thought it was funny and it had gotten 1000 views by the next day instead of the 1 view he thought it would have from the casting director. His character Samuel was born. He never got the role, but he continued making videos as Samuel every week for months. He was amazed he can use this platform for his content and people would actually watch. Alex was looking for a place where he can have total freedom like he did on Stickam. He found YouTube.
Alex watched youtube videos for hours everyday and was amazed at the content these youtubers would put out. At that time he was a big fan of Jenna Marbles and iJustine for vlogging, Roman Atwood and PrankvsPrank for pranks, MysteryGuitarMan for awesome editing, EpicMealTime and My Drunk Kitchen for comedy series, and a few others.
Alex bought tickets to go to VidCon, YouTube's biggest convention. He had 100 subscribers at the time and didn't know any YouTubers. He went to VidCon with a friend and saw a lot of YouTubers there but was too shy to approach most of them. He even sat next to Jenna Marbles at one point and couldn't turn to say Hello. He did talk to Mystery Guitar Man, who was really friendly and gave Alex some helpful YouTube advice. Alex tried his hand at a few types of videos but couldn't really gain a strong following. He managed to get up to 1,000 followers by the next years Vidcon, which he was very excited about.
At Next year's VidCon he made it a personal mission to meet everyone he wanted to meet and get their contact info. He met all except Jenna Marbles (she didn't attend) and iJustine. He met one YouTuber in particular who would ultimately become one of Alex's best friends and YouTube mentors, Roman Atwood.
Roman convinced Alex to start vlogging, and Alex listened. He told Alex that he would give him a shout out and help him get started. Before long, Alex's subscriber count was climbing. Other Youtubers began noticing him and Alex began offering help to any YouTuber that needs it. He had a tv background so he knew what he was doing production-wise. He began shooting videos for multiple YouTubers, including Roman.
Alex got a call from Break (who is now Defy Media) and was offered a job helping out with one of their videos. He ended up scrapping the video and pitched them an even better idea. The video he made for them hit 6 million views in 2 days! At that point they made him Director of Pranks for Break where he directed all of their prank shows. He remained there creating a lot of content for them. He began to start feeling bad that he was doing so well in creating for others that he never really had time to focus on building his own brand, so he left Break.
Alex is now a respected member of the YouTube Community and is continuing to build his own following and grow quickly. He is now friends with everyone he once, and still does, look up to in the community. He's living out his dream and taking it one day at a time.