Jono Matt and Glen Powell
screenwriters to watch
Two southern boys who met when they both separately snuck into the Golden Globes and only talked to each other because Leonardo DiCaprio looked busy. Six years later, they’re writing ‘Captain Planet’ for Leo’s company.
Credits: Co-writers of the live-action film, ‘Captain Planet.’
How did you break in or get your start in screenwriting?
In fifth grade, Jono was writing WWF fan fiction and Glen was writing comedic one-acts about Nordic refugees. But our ‘break’ wasn’t until we teamed up and realized that we shared a sense of humor, tone, and unbridled love for “Armageddon.”
What are some of the biggest lessons you’ve learned?
- There are more NFL athletes than paid screenwriters.
- Only write what you’d pay 18 dollars to see on opening night.
What’s the hardest scene or project you’ve ever had to write? How did you navigate the challenge?
The hardest writing projects tend to be working with people who disagree on what makes a good movie. If your partner is crafting for a different tone, then you’re doomed.
What was a major turning point in your career?
We learned to live by a phrase: “help do the next guy’s job.” A script needs to climb a chain of command, so supply whatever tools the next person needs in order pitch it to their boss. We make the posters, the storyboards, the trailer — anything to make the sale a no-brainer.
What are you working on right now?
It’s an action comedy that isn’t announced yet, but if you know what a moose knuckle is and enjoy jokes about Dan Quayle, then prepare for your golden age of cinema.
What are some of your favorite movies?
We love action movies with heart and humor. Our favorite underdogs are Indiana Jones, Butch Cassidy, John McClane, Marty McFly, and Kevin McCallister.
Who are some of your favorite screenwriters?
We believe that life begins and ends with Richard Linklater. He is the way, the truth, the light. And he is totes adorbs.
Share a memorable experience at Austin Film Festival:
The day before it was announced that we were writing the reboot for ‘Captain Planet,’ we went to see Shane Black speak at a great panel called “Sequels and Reboots” where Shane looked down from the stage, directly at us and said “Why is anyone here? No rookies get these jobs. You might as well plan a wrap party tonight.” And they say never meet your heroes.