Creative-writing alumnus Matt Dunnerstick, A&S '01, received eight film-festival awards for writing and directing his first independent feature film, "The Custom Mary." That seems to be enough acclaim that the movie will soon be released internationally.
In January 2013, the new film writer and director made a particularly impressive showing at the San Diego Black Film Festival (SDBFF), one of the country's largest black film festivals, with a win for Best Cutting Edge Film and Best Religious Film. The two genres seem a little odd for a single picture until one reads the movie synopsis:
"When a young Latina in East Los Angeles meets an African-American lowrider mechanic and aficionado, she struggles to reconcile her faith and blossoming love affair while becoming dangerously involved in a religious attempt to clone Jesus."
Dunnerstick describes the picture as "not really religious yet deals with religion, set in the parts of L.A. most films don't get to show, steeped with logic and humor and magic and science and sheep and DNA."