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Mar 6, 2024 by Julie Brown

Meet a Creative: Meet a Creative: Mathieu Alexander

Filmmaker | Director

Home Base / Long Beach, California.

Activities / Directing, writing, stand-up, pushing Black agenda.

Why Mathieu

Mathieu Alexander’s understanding of story and movie-making is bone-deep, honed from a curriculum he designed for himself at a young age. In high school, he’d pop in one of the DVD’s from his parents’ collection and workshop the narrative, dissecting some of the most popular, influential and beloved films of all time. “Like, watch ‘The Breakfast Club’ and write it in script format,” he says. “I’m pausing and playing ‘The Breakfast Club’ every 10 seconds, typing down everything that’s happening. And that definitely just made the muscle in my brain for the placement of actors and what really happens in the scene, what is in the script, what isn’t in the script.”

Both of his parents were film buffs and they exposed Mathieu at a young age to movies from “The Matrix” to the Scorsese canon. He learned filmmaking techniques and strategy from the “special features” sections on the DVD, studying how directors created the illusion of time travel or how a camera-operator filmed an action sequence. When he arrived at film school at Dillard University in New Orleans, he found a sandbox of equipment and classes that empowered him to turn his written scripts and ideas into films.

Mathieu’s fluency in filmmaking and style is apparent in every film he makes and script he writes. Today, he’s shooting with a camera all the time. Not only does he have an extensive library of footage to pull from, but he’s developed an original style that carries through his entire portfolio.


Mathieu on the set of "Boarded Up," an original Hence production that tells the story of New Orleans skate culture from a Black perspective.

He’s super cool to work with. He knows what he’s doing. Not only from a talent place, but this is a guy that knows his stuff, knows his cameras, knows what story he’s trying to tell. 

Irvin Washington Artist | Photographer
Specialized Skills

Mathieu calls his approach to his work “guerilla auteur” filmmaking. His role models are auteur directors like Wes Anderson, Martin Scorsese, and Quentin Tarantino. With their films, as soon as you see a frame, you know exactly who made it. That’s how Mathieu judges his work, holding everything he makes to a style he calls “afro surreal.” The guerilla part is a nod to his ability to maintain his style and a level of quality on an indie filmmaker’s budget. Even though he doesn’t have the same resources as Wes Anderson or Quentin Tarantino—at least not yet—his films still hold the aesthetic that he wants to be recognized for. “You will know what my films look like, what my films feel like, regardless of what I have access to,” he says.

What's Next

Mathieu is currently shooting a pilot for a script he wrote several years ago that’s inspired by shows like “Black Mirror” and “The Twilight Zone.” He loves building a universe that’s home to a range of stories, each with a fresh cast of characters, a new plotline, and varying themes to pursue. “I always loved shows where it’s like, here’s an isolated story in this universe,” he says. “I also really enjoy your shows like ‘90210,’ your day to day, here’s these people’s lives. So I wanted to create a show that was a mixture between both.” The pilot is called “562,” named after the Long Beach area code where Mathieu grew up. “It’s about the individual stories of the people who live in this city,” he says.