Hi, I’m Matt Schrader.
I specialize in sound and musical storytelling.
I’ve worked on a wide variety of films and podcasts. As a producer, I save podcast networks time and money navigating the most challenging of scripted podcast problems. As a writer-director, I live to identify and create unique creative that pushes boundaries. Epicleff Media prides itself on being at the forefront of what scripted podcasts will be five years from now, and that means our production value is unparalleled.
My key strengths are meticulous organization of large scripted podcast productions, using the production tools Epicleff Media developed specifically for high-end audio in order to deliver on big-picture ideas without gimmicks or tricks. Our story-first approach means vibrant audio, tailor-made to the moment, placing you in the middle of the story with unparalleled production value and zero distraction. Creating that moment is everything.
Using our end-to-end production blueprint, we elevate audio storytelling to all it can be.
Matt Schrader is founder and CEO of Epicleff Media, an industry-leading podcast production company, where he produces and consults on podcast productions and indie films big and small.
Matt is creator of the critically acclaimed podcast Blockbuster, which earned multiple Podcast of the Year awards and been featured by major news outlets, as well as on Apple Podcasts and Spotify. Blockbuster was described by industry journalists as a genre-defining “biopic podcast,” or the first “biopod.”
Matt is also a three-time Emmy Award-winning producer and filmmaker, and director of the #1 hit documentary Score: A Film Music Documentary, a New York Times Critics Pick, which earned a 94% Fresh rating on movie-rating website Rotten Tomatoes.
Founding Epicleff + ‘Score’
In 2014, Matt left his job with CBS to found his production company, Epicleff Media, with his own savings. Featuring the most iconic film composers in Hollywood and the world, including John Williams, Hans Zimmer, Quincy Jones, Trent Reznor, Howard Shore and many others, Score would become a breakout hit in its limited theatrical release, and then become a #1 iTunes and Amazon documentary for five weeks. The film made the long list for the Academy Awards (“Oscars”) Best Documentary Film, as well as the Recording Academy (“Grammys”) award for Best Music Film. It also earned the dubious honor of #1 most pirated documentary of the year, according to torrent downloading site ThePirateBay.
Score: The Podcast
The film spun off a weekly podcast series soon to enter its fifth season, Score: The Podcast, which interviews leading composers and musical storytellers about their music in current films and television shows. The success of the series led Matt to explore a scripted drama series about the beginning of the summer blockbuster era in Hollywood.
Project North Korea
In 2019, Matt announced on Score: The Podcast that he had secretly been working to smuggle a Korean-subtitled version of Score into North Korea as part of the Human Rights Foundation’s first cultural diplomacy mission in the country. North Korean refugees and defectors, including Ji-Seong-ho who was recognized at the 2018 State of the Union, praised the mission for giving North Koreans a window to the outside world. In North Korea, only state-created propaganda films are distributed, and outside culture is prohibited in some cases under penalty of death. North Korean refugee Yeonmi Park, now a human rights advocate and an expert on the country’s growing black market economy for culture, credited her own awakening and eventual fleeing from North Korea as a result of seeing a love story between a man and woman as depicted in scenes from the “Titanic.” The Human Rights Foundation believes Score is invaluable as a cultural diplomacy tool to North Koreans seeking out black-market films on a thriving underground USB market, and believes the documentary is be an indispensable cultural ambassador for transforming North Korea from within.
Matt has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Forbes, Billboard, Deadline Hollywood, IndieWire, Gizmodo, Entertainment Weekly, Yahoo Entertainment, Chicago Tribune, Mashable, Medium, A.V. Club, The Verge, Roger Ebert, Collider, Nerdist and The Hollywood Reporter, and has been a guest on a wide variety of programs, including CBS This Morning, NPR, CBS Radio, Google Talks, Good Morning New York, Good Morning LA, and the Adam Carolla Show. He has also written guest columns about the power of musical storytelling for Moviemaker Magazine and Film School Rejects, and has spoken at Disney, Google, the Smithsonian, The Grammy Museum, Dolby Laboratories, Hollywood’s historic Chinese Theatre, and at events for nonprofits, schools, orchestras, museums and film festivals.
Prior to founding Epicleff Media, Matt was an award-winning producer and editor for news organizations including CBS and NBC in Northern California and Southern California. Schrader’s investigative journalism included reporting that uncovered abuse of the California state budget and overreach of gubernatorial powers (Gov. Jerry Brown turned down interviews and then called Matt “a clown” for confronting him with a camera about it at a public event), and $1.5M in property taxes mistakenly charged to residents of California, which Schrader’s reporting reversed. Matt produced pieces for DuPont-Columbia- and Peabody Award-winning investigative reporter Joel Grover, and successfully launched an Emmy Award-winning “entertainment-investigative” beat at NBC Los Angeles which focused on deep dives in the entertainment industry. Matt’s writing and video editing has recognized and honored by local, national and international journalistic organizations, including the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Radio & Television News Association, Investigative Reporters and Editors and Los Angeles Press Club. He is a judge of the Walter Cronkite Awards for Excellence in Television Political Journalism, held by the Norman Lear Center at the National Press Club in Washington D.C.
Education + Early Life
Matt is a graduate of the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts and Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. As a student, he was an editor for the Daily Trojan student newspaper, and executive producer of the nightly Annenberg Television News program, and launched an ambitious deep-dive Sports Extra program following the stories inside the USC football team. Matt’s student work won awards for best newscast and news website. He also helped found the Southern California Business Film Festival, an international film festival co-hosted by the USC School of Cinematic Arts and USC Marshall School of Business.
Schrader was born in Burbank, CA, but grew up in Seattle, Boise, and Colorado, where he attended high school while working as a high school sports beat writer for the 100,000-circulation regional newspaper The Gazette, and covered state championship games. He also worked on their Denver Broncos Sunday coverage team.