When it comes to
inspirational football films, Rudy is
often the gold standard. Here in Santa Monica, the City’s namesake high school
has a “Rudy” of its own, and his name is Matthew Tapia. The 18-year-old-senior
is the subject of short documentary.
entitled Matt, the short film
releases on May 27 and tells Tapia’s story of beating the odds. Specifically,
Tapia was born three months premature and, at the time, given a 5 percent
chance to survive.
His weight at
the time of birth: 1.5 pounds.
Now at age 18,
Tapia is a senior at Samohi. On the film’s website, Tapia is described as
“gregarious” and “defiant,” a young man who relied upon “stubbornness” to not
only survive but put himself on track to attend college next year.”
Indeed, Tapia is
not going too far away from Santa Monica, as the graduating senior will be
enrolling at UCLA in the Fall 2014 quarter.
Matt is a huge
sports fan and dreams of being a play-by-play [announcer] one day,” the film’s
website described about Tapia. “Heading into his senior year, Matt took
advantage of an opportunity offered to him by a brave coach and some open
minded kids, and joined the football team.”
While on the
Samohi football team, Tapia reportedly attended every practice.
With Tapia on
the team, the Vikings football squad recorded a winning record, made the
playoffs, and advanced into the second round.
Along the way,
Tapia played in two games. However, his impact on the team was far greater, as
he was also described as the “indomitable spirit and positive attitude” that
inspired Samohi’s football team discover its identity.
Directed by Seth
Shapiro and produced by Diesel Films, Matt
will be available to view online.
information about the film and how to view it, visit its website at www.mattthefilm.com or visit its Facebook
page at www.facebook.com/MattTheFilm.
Copyright © 2011 by Santa Monica Mirror. All rights reserved.