Matt Cerwen Plus

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Sydney, Australia

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INT. VIDEO STORE ― DAY

It’s the mid 1990s. A BOY, no older than 13 or 14, dressed in school uniform, is renting a gory, R-rated horror film. The VIDEO STORE CLERK, watching an episode of 90210 on the screen in the store, doesn’t bother asking for proof of age and the boy leaves with the video, smiling wildly.

That’s how it was in the 90s, and that boy was me. At that point I was fascinated by 80s slasher films like the Friday the 13th series. Jason Vorhees and Michael Myers were on high rotation.

My fascination for horror films prompted me to save up for a secondhand video camera, which I bought at age 14.

Many weekends were spent running through the forest with my friends making one murderous short after the next. Thankfully it didn’t take long for me to grow out of that phase and I moved on to more creative fare. Although my mathematics homework suffered I was recognized with over 15 student film awards from festivals all over the world.

After high school I cemented my film education with a degree in production from the QLD College Of Art.

Since my university days I have written, directed, edited and shot music videos, branded content and award-winning short films. My love for electronic music has seen me direct videos for some of the world’s most celebrated electronic artists and Djs. I’ve directed content for brands such as Qantas and Red Bull.

In 2011 I made my feature film directorial debut as a “director for hire” on the Australian teen drama – Circle Of Lies – which saw a U.S release through Warner Brothers in 2012 and has since been released theatrically in Australia, on DVD and VOD in Latin America and South Africa, on Qantas In-Flight Entertainment and on television in the UK. Ed Gibbs from Empire Magazine called it “An authentic teen drama that speaks directly to its audience”. Film Ink said “Circle Of Lies is quietly impressive”.

In 2013 my latest short film “Inside” was a celebrated Tropfest finalist. Sydney Morning Herald Film critic Giles Hardie said in his front page article  —  "It was Inside that stood out from the pack, with a blend of colour, emotion and madness that was worthy of its Wizard Of Oz style final image". Trashbaggery said Inside was - "A powerful, at times terrifying film, with raw, very convincing performances. A poignant little gem about self-expression misunderstood". 

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