Filmmaker Mateen Kemet is a Bronx, New York original, now residing in Los Angeles, California. He‘s written and directed 12 short films, 1 music video, and 11 screenplays since changing his life-path from Wall Street bond trader to public school teacher, and finally, to filmmaker. Mateen has won 17 film prizes, including a Directors Guild of America Student Filmmaker Award and the Special Directors Prize at FESPACO in West Africa, the largest arts festival in the African diaspora. He has screened projects worldwide, represented in Singapore, Australia, South Africa, The United Kingdom, India, Pakistan, Israel, and Latin America. Domestically, his work has been featured in over 60 film festivals and he was commissioned to create works for such diverse venues as The Experience Music Project museum in Seattle Washington, and the Oakland International Airport in Oakland California. At the latter venue, his film Oakland B Mine has been viewed by more than 5 million travelers, and is continuously screening at the Southwest Airline baggage claim in the Oakland International Airport through January 2016. A former nominee for the Rockefeller Foundation Media Fellowship, Mateen is also an alumnus of the highly competitive Searchlab directors program developed by Fox Studios. Additionally, he was a finalist on the Steven Spielberg / Mark Burnett reality competition On The Lot. During this nationally televised competition, his work was chosen over 12,000 other filmmakers to compete for a chance at a one-million dollar development deal with Dreamworks Studios. Mateen placed in the top 10, finishing 7th.
He currently is making the rounds with his first feature-length script, The Sundarbans Tiger; an animated story adapted from a children‘s book of the same title that follows a young tiger fending for himself in the East Indian jungle after his mother is ruthlessly poached. Lastly, he is concurrently writing his second and third feature scripts, the first titled – The Mic, a zany heist film rooted in the world of hip-hop and set in the Bronx. The second script, a gritty drama about the life, loves and struggle of a young Black man living in Oakland, California’s infamous “Lower Bottom“ neighborhood, from which the film takes it title, The Lower Bottom.
Mateen holds a BA in Economics from San Francisco State University and an MFA in Film Production from Chapman University. He is a lifelong practicioner of Wing Chun Kung Fu and a rabid New York Jets fan.