Alaskan born and bred, Chris earned bachelor’s degrees in both psychology and sociology, but his fascination with cinema and filmmaking instead led him to the world of visual effects. Now a veteran of the film industry, Chris’s impressive résumé includes compositing and VFX supervision on numerous films and TV shows, including 12 Years A Slave, Doctor Strange, The Greatest Showman, and Better Call Saul, among others. A gifted storyteller, Chris has also directed many music videos and led visual effects teams for U2, Chris Cornell, New Kids on the Block, and Paramore, just to name a few. Outside of the Crafty Apes office, Chris enjoys spending time with his wife and 3 kids, and is rarely seen without his favorite Seahawks cap on.
Founder / Executive Producer
From the moment he was born, Jason was destined to be a part of the film and TV world – his mother gave birth to him while watching Bonanza in a trailer. The Santa Barbara native grew up playing competitive tennis, but it didn’t take long for his dreams to beckon, and Jason headed to UCLA to study theatre. Soon after, his love of the theatrical took him to The American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, where he pursued further study in acting and writing. While there, he met mentor Anna Deavere Smith, who continues to inspire him to expand his knowledge of his craft, and to always think outside of the box. He would later go on to help found Crafty Apes, with credits as a VFX producer on films including Ant-Man and the Wasp, John Wick 2, and La La Land.
Executive Producer / CMO
Matt Akey has been in the Hollywood community, producing visual effects, animation and live action content for over 20 years. He is an ardent fan of bullet points:
Works as a VFX Executive Producer, supporting our many teams internationally. VFX Produces a bit, marketing, PR… et. al.
Caretakes three (3) Akey Jr’s and a Coonhound / Staffordshire Terrier mix
Was nicknamed the “Mad Bomber“ in high school for his baseline fadeaway 3-pointer.
Community theater director, reclaimed wood connoisseur and Steve Nash fan.
Watches: Braveheart, Shawshank, Amelie, Heat, Friday Night Lights
Listens: Hamilton (Broadway Recording), U2, Debussy, Lecrae
The ones he enjoyed working on the most: Man of Steel, Just Mercy and Hugo
Global Head of Creative
Born and raised in Kodiak, Alaska, Mark departed the frozen north after graduating high school and made his way to Santa Barbara. There, he turned a bachelor’s degree in history into a gig as a compositor and original member of the Crafty Apes team, eventually becoming Crafty Apes’ VFX supervisor on such films and TV shows as Deadpool 2, A Wrinkle in Time, and the recent AMC hit Lodge 49. Starting in a one room office with four people and watching the company grow has been the highlight of working at Crafty Apes for Mark. A fan of positivity and watching Starship Troopers, he occupies his free time by spending 10 hours a day on the phone with his fiancé and thinking of ways to increase efficiency and happiness within the walls of the Crafty Apes offices.