Although born in Texas, Matt Stone was raised in Littleton, CO and he attended the University of Colorado at Boulder as a math major. As an undergraduate, he met filmmaker Trey Parker (who reportedly fed him slabs of roast beef) and eventually acted in Parker's first feature "Cannibal! The Musical/Alferd Packer! The Musical!" (1993), a fanciful retelling of the true story of an 19th Century prospector who ate several colleagues. When the film failed to find a berth at Sundance, it was shown at a midnight screening (and reportedly gave birth to the alternative Slamdance Festival). Troma picked up the rights and released the film. After Stone graduated in 1994, he and Parker headed to L.A. and attempted to find work. Commissioned to create a holiday video greeting card by TV executive Brian Graden, the pair fashioned a crudely animated short using construction paper cut-outs. "The Spirit of Christmas" centered on four foul-mouthed kids who witnessed a confrontation between Santa Clause and Jesus Christ over the true meaning of Christmas. The video became an industry hit with celebrities from Tom Cruise to Steven Spielberg obtaining copies. Parker and Stone began to field offers to direct features but finally accepted cable channel Comedy Central's deal to create an animated series. Almost from its debut in August 1997, "South Park" courted controversy. Not only was the animation subversively substandard but the writing was humorous and took on every sacred cow, skewering topics ranging from religion to euthanasia to the cult of celebrity. No one and nothing was immune. The show also pushed the boundaries of language as the four main characters, Kyle (patterned on Stone), Cartman, Stan and Kenny (who invariably gets "killed" in each episode) utter four-letter words, spew vomit and fart. The amazing success of the show spawned the requisite tee-shirts, videos and other products, lent catchphrases like, "Oh my God! They killed Kenny! You bastards!" to popular culture and led to the network's offer of some $15 million to Parker and Stone to guarantee production of new episodes through the year 2000.
Slender and tall, with a curly 'fro, Stone found himself as an unlikely leading man when director David Zucker cast him and Parker in the leads of the feature comedy "BASEketball" (1998). While neither Stone nor Parker harbored a desire for a career before the cameras, they readily accepted the offer to participate in the film comedy. Parallels between their characters, who create a popular sensation by combining elements of baseball and basketball can readily be drawn.
As "South Park's" pop cultural cachet inevitably cooled after several seasons on the air, Parker and Stone explored new horizons, again pushing politically correct boundaries. The first effort, "That's My Bush!" (Comedy Central, 2001), a sit-com parodying sit-coms by showing President George W. Bush in outrageous variations of cliched, "wacky" sit-com premises, failed to catch on with audiences, as much due to the pro-America sentiments following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, as to its own creative shortcomings. Parker and Stone's next major project, however, was appealing subversive and high-concept: "Team America: World Police" (2004) satirized everything from the current political climate to big-budget action films and included a whopping does of the duo's trademark scatalogical humor, all delivered by puppets designed in a clunky, old-fashioned "Thunderbirds"-style.
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Co-wrote and produced "Cannibal! The Musical!" with Trey Parker
Moved to Los Angeles with Trey Parker
Asked by TV executive Brian Graden to create an animated video Christmas card; result was the cult "The Spirit of Christmas", a five-minute short
Co-wrote and starred with Parker in "Orgazmo"; shown at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival
Co-created the animated Comedy Central series "South Park" with Trey Parker; also wrote, performed music and voiced several characters
Co-starred in David Zucker's film comedy "BASEketball"
With Parker, produced, co-wrote and voiced characters in the feature "South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut"
Co-created the sitcom "That's My Bush," spoofing the presidential family
With Parker, co-wrote, co-produced and voiced characters in the feature "Team America: World Police"
Signed a deal to keep "South Park" at Comedy Central through the end of 2008, with Parker and Stone continuing to write, direct, voice and edit
Signed a deal with Comedy Central worth $75 million, which will keep "South Park" at the network through 2011
Teamed with Trey Parker and composer Robert Lopez to create the Broadway musical, "The Book of Mormon"; earned Tony nominations for Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical and Best Score