Matt Yamashita is an Emmy Award winning filmmaker born and raised on the Hawaiian island of Molokai. After receiving a BFA in Film Production from Chapman University, Matt returned to Molokai to become the island’s first professional filmmaker. He has been working in the film industry since 2001 and has developed a full range of production skills including: concept development, writing, directing, producing, shooting, and editing.
Matt has unique expertise working within Hawaii-based communities, cultures, and environments and has dedicated the primary focus of his work to telling Hawaii’s stories through a local lens. Since 2016, Matt has also been working on national and international projects focusing on themes of environment and culture including profile pieces for the Mill Valley Film Group's Emmy award winning series "The New Environmentalists" narrated by Robert Redford and Sigourney Weaver. Matt is also a key collaborator for storytelling and media outreach for the Surf Conservation Partnership through Conservation International and Save the Waves Coalition.
Matt has held key roles in productions that have received national and international broadcast on networks including PBS National and Arte France. He has also had a number of feature and short documentaries showcased at film festivals around the world, where they have won numerous awards.
In his personal life, Matt is a passionate surfer, fisherman, soccer coach, community volunteer, and family man who cares deeply about humanity and our planet.