iOS app Android app

Matthew Chapman
GET UPDATES FROM Matthew Chapman
Writer-Director Matthew Chapman is the author of two critically acclaimed non-fiction books, Trials of the Monkey - An Accidental Memoir and 40 Days and 40 Nights.

His screenplay credits include The Ledge which he also directed, Reaching For The Moon, directed by Bruno Barreto, and Runaway Jury, directed by Gary Fleder.

He is the co-founder and president of, an organization trying to get the presidential candidates to hold a debate on science.

He wrote and directed The Ledge, starring Charlie Hunnam, Liv Tyler, Terrence Howard, and Patrick Wilson. A thriller about a battle between a non-believer and a fundamentalist, it was selected for the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and is distributed in America by IFC. It has been seen in over 50 territories worldwide including Indonesia, the Middle East, most of Europe, Russia, China, Turkey, India, and Central and South America.

Entries by Matthew Chapman

Why Is America 50 Years Behind the Times When It Comes to the Death Penalty?

(15) Comments | Posted August 12, 2014 | 8:18 PM

Fifty years ago today, the last executions took place in England. A pair of young men were hung at the same time, though in different prisons. I do not remember these executions, but I do remember when it became clear they were going to be the last.

The hanging...

Read Post

Gigi Gordon, Death Row Lawyer: An Admirable Life Ended as It Was Lived

(1) Comments | Posted August 1, 2014 | 7:41 PM

In my last piece, "How I Became Interested in the Death Penalty and Why I'm Against It," I mentioned a woman I met who handled her state's death row inmates in their final appeals.

When I asked if she'd ever met one who seemed so evil she...

Read Post

How I Became Interested in the Death Penalty and Why I'm Against It

(38) Comments | Posted July 27, 2014 | 10:25 AM

Since I wrote my last piece on the death penalty, "Hey, Arizona, Next Time Try Scaphism," I've been asked why I care so much about it and why it angers me so much. I am angry because I have lived in a country that abolished it without descending...

Read Post

Hey, Arizona, Next Time Try Scaphism

(19) Comments | Posted July 25, 2014 | 9:53 AM

If America wants to kill a scrawny camouflaged terrorist on a boulder-strewn hillside thousands of miles away -- boom, no sooner said than done, vaporized in an instant. If, however, it wants to terminate someone it has under lock and key, who needs only to be walked a few yards...

Read Post

Six Days of Violent Death, Literary Honor, and Politics in Rio de Janeiro

(0) Comments | Posted July 21, 2014 | 2:42 PM

I came to Rio to accept an award from the Brazilian Academy of Letters for my work on the screenplay of Bruno Barreto's movie, "Reaching For The Moon," ("Flores Raras" in Brazil) about the poet, Elizabeth Bishop and her love affair with a Brazilian woman. On the day I arrived,...

Read Post

"Marcia Bystryn Is Not Accepting E-Mails"

(9) Comments | Posted July 16, 2014 | 12:19 PM

Marcia Bystryn is the President of the New York League of Conservation Voters, an organization I have always admired. I support many environmental causes and agree with Marcia on 99% of her and her organization's positions.

This past Monday, however, on WNYC's Brian Lehrer Show, she defended a lethal...

Read Post

Steel One Day, Irony the Next

(4) Comments | Posted July 11, 2014 | 11:08 PM

Two days ago, a woman was almost killed by a ten pound steel chisel that got hurled through a fourth floor window by construction of the 91st Street Marine Transfer Station in Yorkviille in upper Manhattan.

Today, by coincidence, a judge dismissed two lawsuits seeking...

Read Post

City Project Almost Kills First Victim

(1) Comments | Posted July 10, 2014 | 9:59 AM

A woman was exercising on a mat on the fourth floor of an athletic facility at 91st and York Avenue when a sharp-ended 10-pound steel chisel crashed through a plate glass window and landed three inches from her right side. Glass fell on her and cut her. She...

Read Post

Marriage Equality: THE Best Reason to Celebrate on July 4th

(0) Comments | Posted June 18, 2014 | 11:06 PM

If I had to say what was the best thing that's happened in the entire world in the last 10 years, it would be the arrival of gay marriage in America.

I don't say this because I was raised with a gay couple very present in my life from...

Read Post

Why Is New York Mayor Bill de Blasio Acting Like a Climate Change-Denying Republican?

(5) Comments | Posted May 27, 2014 | 9:01 AM

Last week, seven people were arrested for protesting the building of a massive two-acre, 10-story-high garbage transfer site in a flood zone in Yorkville, just south of East Harlem. Among those arrested were an 80-year-old woman and an African American woman of 30 with a severe heart condition....

Read Post

At Last! Victory For the Old System! America Takes Another Step Toward Monarchy!

(14) Comments | Posted April 3, 2014 | 11:18 AM

As an Englishman I'd like to congratulate the Supreme Court of the United States for bringing America one step closer to monarchy. I know a lot of people might think this is a backward step, but come on... why did you leave in the first place? Decentralization of power, one...

Read Post

Piers Morgan Departs CNN as 'Breaking News! There Is None!' Becomes Company Policy

(33) Comments | Posted April 1, 2014 | 9:31 AM

When Piers Morgan first came to CNN three years ago, the network was already in decline. Morgan arrived to fill the nine o'clock evening spot previously anchored by Larry King. King interviewed the most interesting and important leaders of the time, and celebrities, some with talent. He also interviewed psychics,...

Read Post

General Motors, Corporate Morality, and the Call for Less Regulation

(4) Comments | Posted March 26, 2014 | 4:14 PM

As reported in detail yesterday in the New York Times, it seems a number of people have been killed in GM Cobalts because the ignition switched itself off as the car was being driven. If the car then crashed, the airbag would not deploy.

According to the New York...

Read Post

In Control Ben Kallos Attacks Out of Control Trash Plan

(5) Comments | Posted March 24, 2014 | 9:21 AM

Check out this video of New York City Council Member Benjamin Kallos coolly picking apart an element of Bloomberg's old trash plan that has gone out of control.

The collection and disposal of trash in New York City, but particularly in Manhattan, is achieved through a mixture...

Read Post

Environmental Justice Should Not Be an Either/Or Proposition

(4) Comments | Posted February 25, 2014 | 3:36 PM

Part One -- K And E Shout In My Face

I thought I might get punched yesterday at a heavily attended and contentious city council meeting to discuss New York City's environment, specifically as it is affected by New York City garbage. The meeting was so heavily attended, hundreds of...

Read Post

Racism and Garbage in New York City

(3) Comments | Posted February 24, 2014 | 7:47 AM

I received a number of emails and questions on Facebook on my last post asking me to explain why I called a garbage site on the Upper East Side "racist."

I will explain below, but if this post gets up soon enough, and if you have a chance...

Read Post

'Talking Trash' Report Slams NYC's Expensive and Environmentally Outdated Garbage Plan

(1) Comments | Posted February 19, 2014 | 4:56 PM

For the first time in a decade-long fight against a garbage site slated to be built in surreal proximity to public housing, a report has been published that exposes not just the absurdity of this one site, but the absurdities and weaknesses of the entire plan it is...

Read Post

Bloomberg Is Going to Teach Other Cities What?

(2) Comments | Posted December 17, 2013 | 8:55 AM

One of the downsides of traveling a certain amount is that listening to Americans talking about how America does everything better than everyone else can become almost unendurable.

Public education here is terrible and the health care system still sucks; homelessness, teen pregnancy, drug abuse, gross inequality, and gun...

Read Post

Kill the Bloomdoggles

(6) Comments | Posted December 13, 2013 | 7:40 PM

I thought I had created a new word, bloomdoggle, until I did an internet search and discovered there have been so many bloomdoggles that the word already exists.

The modern definition of a boondoggle is an expensive and unnecessary project undertaken for political reasons. A bloomdoggle is...

Read Post

Bloomberg Project Wastes Millions While 22,000 New York Children Remain Homeless -- What Will de Blasio Do?

(7) Comments | Posted December 12, 2013 | 7:50 AM

The New York Times is currently publishing a series of articles about a homeless girl and her family. Brilliantly written by Andrea Elliott, "Invisible Child," describes a year in the life of 12-year-old Dasani as she tries to grow up and get an education while living in a...

Read Post