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Mentorship pair Colten Matousek & BJ Verot are taking part in our 2022/2023 Professional Mentorship Program,
in the discipline of film. They have been working on developing Colten’s first official short film:
developing the script, editing, shot listing, and refining grant writing skills.

What results do you feel have come from your participation in the Professional Mentorship Program?

“The Professional Mentorship Program has allowed me to work directly with my mentor BJ Verot, who is a prominent writer/director in the city. The ability to share thoughts and gain insight into an idea I’ve been working on since 2021 has provided an immense sense of knowledge on how to successfully translate an idea into reality. It has also allowed me to really refine my skills as a writer. This included learning various writing tools and techniques, taking another massive step towards really establishing this as my career. It has helped me deal with procrastination, and to try and work through ideas instead of simply writing them down and walking away. Another key element of the program has been networking, which included BJ getting me into All Access Manitoba, and meeting fellow mentees in the program, who have voiced interests in collaborating.” – Colten

Working with Colten was a very positive experience overall. I feel that I was able to reflect on my own work, and show Colten a set of primary skills that I use to this day when developing a project. As for myself, there were a few other mentors that I had a chance to reconnect with from previous work we were involved with, and that was beneficial as well.“- BJ

What type of work do you create?

I’ve made a variety of shorts that have been to festivals around the world, and I’ve since moved into Directing features as well. I make a lot of genre films.” – BJ

What aspect of your work brings you joy?

“I think being able to create a story that I need to tell, and showcase it to the public. Being able to tell a story that I love really does bring me a lot of joy. Another factor that brings me joy is to have even one person affected by my work, or to find some meaning in it.” – Colten

This Mentorship Program was great for me because it ties directly to elements of filmmaking that bring me most joy. The process of examining a slate of ideas, refining them, and then expanding on the one that resonates most soundly. Additionally, reaching the finish line on a project. Creatively, film projects can take a long time to complete, so exporting the final FINAL version of the film and prepping it for festivals is always a satisfying feeling as well.” -BJ

Colten Matousek (he/him) My name is Colten Matousek and I’m a writer and director who is a recent graduate of the University Of Winnipeg Filmmaking Program. I was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. My work mainly focuses on writing and directing short films such as narrative pieces, music videos and documentaries. I also focus on other aspects of the creative film process including camera work, gripping/lighting and editing many of my projects. I have been practicing the art of film for about 4 years now.

BJ Verot (he/him) BJ is an award-winning filmmaker, and Stunt Coordinator/Performer for film and television. His first feature film, a sci-fi horror entitled The Return, is available through Uncork’d Entertainment, and the film received an award for Best Feature at the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival.

His most recent short film, Echoes In The Ice, screened at Telefilm: Not Short On Talent At Cannes Program at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. It has been acquired by DUST

His NSI – Drama Prize FilmChopin’s Heart, screened at Cannes with the Telefilm NSOT Program, and he is the winner of the nationally televised CBC Short Film Face Off (2015) for his film Loss Of Contact.

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