Canadian-born actor, Matt Craven, is amongst the most sought after character actors of film and television today. He has starred in such blockbuster and critically acclaimed films as the Academy Award nominated CRIMSON TIDE, A FEW GOOD MEN, and SAG Award nominated X-MEN: FIRST CLASS. He has starred opposite great Hollywood actors such as Denzel Washington, Gene Hackman, Helen Mirren, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ethan Hawke, James Gandolfini and Michael Caine, to name a few. Most recently, he starred alongside Amy Adams and Patricia Clarkson in the HBO mini-series SHARP OBJECTS. Recent films include STONEWALL, which chronicles a young man’s political awakening and coming of age leading up to the Stonewall Riots, and UNLESS, based on the novel of the same name, opposite Academy Award nominated Catherine Keener.
Originally from Ontario, Canada, Craven did not catch the acting bug until later in his years. Craven’s father died six weeks after his birth, and he ultimately dropped out of high school to help support his mother and family. He found himself working odd jobs such as driving trucks and working maintenance for electrical companies. It wasn’t until Craven was about 20 years old that his love for acting sparked, when he found an ad in the local newspaper announcing auditions for a local production of Dracula. Craven auditioned, landed the role of Jonathan Harker, and from then on, never looked back. He found his true passion.
Craven’s first feature film was opposite Bill Murray in MEATBALLS as Hardware, one of Tripper Harrison’s (Murray) counselors-in-training at Camp North Star, a cut-rate summer camp. This hilarious comedy was the start of Craven’s career, especially in the comedy world. During this time, Murray took Craven under his wing and immediately started teaching him the fundamentals of improve and how to create and mold a character. Craven’s second major project, the live action short, BRAVERY IN THE FIELD, was nominated for an Academy Award.
In the following years, Craven moved on to star in three different sitcom pilots opposite the likes of Alan Arkin, Richard Lewis, Annie Potts and Holland Taylor. Moving away from the comedy scene, Craven’s first major dramatic break came when he was cast in the drama/horror/mystery cult favorite, JACOB’S LADDER, which follows a haunted Vietnam war veteran as he attempts to discover his past while suffering from a severe case of dissociation. Craven starred as Michael, a chemist in the Army’s chemical warfare division where he worked on a drug that was secretly given to the veteran’s unit. This critically acclaimed film raised Craven’s career to a whole new level, proving his versatility as an actor, and truly gave him a taste of Hollywood stardom.
Craven has since starred in massively popular feature films including PUBLIC ENEMIES, DISTURBIA, DÉJÀ VU, THE LIFE OF DAVID GALE, THE STATEMENT, INDIAN SUMMER, K2 AND TIN MEN.
He also worked exclusively with Graham Yost on HBO’s acclaimed award-winning series FROM THE EARTH TO THE MOON, THE PACIFIC and BOOMTOWN. He was a series regular on JUSTIFIED, starred on TNT’s NUREMBERG and KINGFISH: A STORY OF HUEY P. LONG, Steven Spielberg’s HIGH INCIDENT, and opposite Jeff Goldblum on NBC’s RAINES.
Truly a man of many talents, Craven has also made a successful impact in theater as well, as his first off-Broadway play was the award-winning BLUE WINDOW, which was ultimately picked up and filmed for American Playhouse. He also successfully brought one of his favorite Canadian plays, THE CRACKWALKER to be produced at The Hudson Guild Theater in New York City, starring himself, a young Joe Mantello (WICKED) and Frances Fisher (TITANIC). Additionally, Craven starred in the critically acclaimed American premiere of the German playwright, Franz Xaver Kroetz’s THE NEST.
Off the screen, Craven is a strong supporter of One Heart Source, an organization designed to empower at risk children through education in Africa. He is also an avid golfer, as he has been ranked third by Golf Digest in Hollywood’s Top 100 Golfers. He also enjoys gardening, cooking and woodworking, and best of all spending time with his wife of over 25 years, Emmy Award winning Make Up Artist, Sally Sutton, and their two children, Nicholas and Josephine.