Twenty-three selections were accepted into the SXSW Film Festival's High School Short Film category, but only one was able to win the prize. It went to Boom, the creepily fun love child of Addison's own Daniel Matyas, Andrew Fields and Brian Broder.
The boys all attend Greenhill School, which had a record showing in the category this year; seven out of the 23 accepted entries were conceived at the Dallas institution.
We caught up with Senior Daniel Matyas for a quick chat about the victory; he doesn't think it's a coincidence that his alma mater produces so many skilled filmmakers. "We've been fortunate to receive so much support," Matyas says. "Corbin Doyle is our teacher. He started the program 13 or 14 years ago from scratch and it grew into this full-blown production."
The Advanced Video Production program teaches everything from filmmaking to video editing and brings in local industry insiders to assist in advising the budding artists. Matyas, Field and Broder got inspiration for Boom from a guest lecturer, local artist Trenton Doyle Hancock (Tally Dunn Gallery, Cowboys Stadium), who gave the students a challenge. He told them to visit a thrift or vintage shop and find one, inspirational item costing less than 15 dollars and buy it. Matyas did just that and found his jack in the box. Soon the three were investigating its possibilities and decided it would make a spectacular bomb, and the rest of the short film flowed out of that decision.
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Matyas has been messing around with film since taking one of Doyle's classes in seventh grade. "I saw this class and thought, 'I like movies,' and 'This would be fun to do,'" he continues, "but there was so much more to it: It turned into 'I love making movies.'" That passion is shared by his co-conspirators, Juniors Andrew Fields and Brian Broder, who each had at least one other horse in the race but won with Boom.
While all three are now driven to work in the movie industry, Daniel Matyas has his next step in place. He's working on his first feature screenplay and looks forward to developing it into full-length film.
Congratulations, fellas. Dallas is proud of you.