DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES
MATT REEVES (Director) gained feature film prominence when
he helmed the much lauded science fiction-horror hit Cloverfield (2008), about
the arrival of a giant monster in New York City and its impact on the lives of
several people there. Shot in hyper-realistic verite style with a single camera
carried by one of the protagonists, the film spoke to post-9/11 fears while
delivering a special effects tour de force. The modestly budgeted film set a
domestic record for a January release and went on to gross more than $175
Following Cloverfield, Reeves directed Let Me In (2010). Acclaimed by
critics and audiences alike, the film is a remake of the Swedish horror film Let
the Right One In, about the relationship between a bullied young boy (Kodi
Smit-McPhee) and his new neighbor, a young girl who turns out to be a vampire.
Reeves co-created the popular television series Felicity, starring Golden
Globe Award winning actress Keri Russell. Reeves served as executive producer
with partner and co-creator J.J. Abrams. He frequently directed episodes during
the show's four-season run, including the 1998 pilot for the WB network.
Reeves made his feature directorial debut with the 1996 dark comedy The
Pallbearer, starring Gwyneth Paltrow, David Schwimmer and Barbara Hershey. He
developed the screenplay with Jason Katims through Robert Redford's Sundance
Institute. In 1999, Reeves co-wrote and co-produced James Gray's critically
acclaimed feature The Yards, starring Mark Wahlberg, Joaquin Phoenix and
Born in Rockville Centre, New York, Reeves was raised in Los Angeles, where
he began making 8mm movies at the age of eight. As a teenager, he discovered
that a local cable system was broadcasting homemade movies on its public access
channel, and contacted the program, Word of Mouth, to air his own productions.
Reeves not only managed to get his movies shown on the program, but was also
interviewed by its host, Gerard Ravel. Through him, Reeves met aspiring young
filmmakers J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk. The trio became fast friends and
subsequent production partners. Perhaps most importantly, the festival
introduced Reeves to producer Steven Spielberg, who after reading an article
about it in the Los Angeles Times (titled The Beardless Wonders of Film Making)
hired Reeves, Abrams and Burke to clean his old teenage 8mm films and repair the
splices for $300.
Reeves and Burk eventually attended the University of Southern California,
where they collaborated on Reeves' thesis project, a short fantasy film called
Mr. Petrified Forest, about a photographer obsessed with disaster. The project
required a plane crash sequence, which Abrams, returning from college on the
East Coast, to constructed on the front yard of his parents' home. Mr.
Petrified Forest made the rounds of student film festivals, where it netted not
only an award but also Industry attention and an agent for Reeves. He soon set
to work on several feature scripts, including an action-adventure film that
later became the Steven Seagal picture Under Siege 2: Dark Territory (1995).
For television, Reeves helmed the pilot episodes of Gideon's Crossing and
Miracles for ABC, Conviction for NBC and episodes of NBC's Homicide: Life on the
Street and ABC's Relativity.
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