Matthew S. Alaniz
Alt text: Headshot of Matthew Alaniz, a Latino man with black slicked back hair and short facial hair. He is outside in front of a fence, wearing a grey jacket.
Matthew S. Alaniz is an award-winning screenwriter and story consultant living in the vibrant and creative city of Austin, Texas. Prior to his endeavors in filmmaking, Alaniz was an architectural designer in Houston, but his passion for storytelling led him to attend film school. In 2013, he received a Bachelor of Science in Film and immediately began his writing career. As a Latino with a physical disability, his stories and work are influenced by his observations and interactions in society. He strives to tell stories that express a broader and more complex human narrative. Matthew has also served as a judge, juror, and script reader for film festivals and competitions. Although he appreciates the collaborative spirit and technical elegance of the filmmaking process, Alaniz believes that great cinema starts with the written word – the script.
As an artist and storyteller, I strive to understand, interpret, and express the diverse and complex nature of the human experience; but as a Latino with a physical disability, I rarely see myself represented in entertainment and media. Too often, the mainstream fails to represent and misrepresents marginalized groups and individuals who not only contribute to society but who mend it in the process. I seek to change this narrative through the stories I tell along with the ones I help mold. Working with and attending Superfest Disability Film Festival has helped broaden my knowledge of disability culture and their selection of films has shown me profound pieces of art and unbridled talent that have impacted my perspective as an audience member, a person with a disability and as an artist. It is an honor serving as a juror for their film selection process, an honor which gives me tremendous pride and a deep sense of purpose. Their continued support has given me a stronger voice in both the disabled and mainstream communities. It is this voice and sense of purpose that I hope to bring to The Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability as a member of the advisory board. It is my wish that my experience, expertise, and passion contribute to the Institute’s pursuit of social change. As a member of the advisory board, I will strive to reach my potential and reinforce the Institute’s commitment to enrich the lives of the disabled community and beyond. I know that being a part of PKLI will provide me with a wealth of knowledge and grant me the experience I need to be the change I want to see in the media we consume and our society in which we live. I look forward to learning from and growing with The Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability.