Matthew Frewer

Matthew Frewer, actor, writer (b at Washington, DC 4 Jan 1958). Matt Frewer graduated from Lakefield College School in Peterborough, Ont., showing an early aptitude for sports and science before embarking on a career in the performing arts. He studied drama for 3 years at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School in England and worked in the UK as an actor for 11 years before going to Los Angeles to launch the Max Headroom phenomenon for which he is well known. His stature as one of the most recognizable and sought-after character actors in both Canada and the US owes a great deal not only to his supple physical presence and his ease and fluency with language in his characterizations, but also to the science fiction genre's persistent popularity in North America since the late 1970s and its need for eccentricity in story and character.

Matt Frewer is best known as Max Headroom, the digitally preserved sardonic alter-ego of fictional investigative reporter Edison Carter, on the British sci-fi drama Max Headroom: 20 Minutes into the Future (1987). The series, and character, reflected the growing fascination of Western audiences with the computerized technology/gadget boom of the early 1980s and, more specifically, experiments in artificial intelligence. Though only 13 episodes aired, the audacious but physically vapid character - as performed by the square-jawed Frewer and enhanced by faux-computer-generated makeup - went on to become a pop culture phenomenon, appearing in science-fiction-themed feature films, talk shows, music videos and soft drink commercials. Max Headroom even hosted the 90-minute CBC television special opening the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics. Frewer, under pounds of foam latex rubber, had become one of the most recognizable performers in the world.

In 1989, with the popularity of Max Headroom fading, Frewer accepted the lead in a new CBS television series entitled Doctor Doctor. The sitcom about the zany exploits of 4 Harvard medical program graduates opening a new practice only aired for 2 seasons, but Frewer's dishevelled physical presence and hilariously tormented take on the genius, and socially hopeless, Dr. Mike Stratford stood out. The role effectively removed Frewer from the Max Headroom glare and into a successful career in film and television.

The next 2 decades saw Frewer continue his eccentric characterizations, including a GEMINI AWARD-winning performance as Frederick Banting in the Canadian Children's television series Mentors in 1998, lead roles on PSI Factor, Taken, Intelligence, Da Vinci's Inquest (earning a second Gemini nomination for the latter), The Stand, and Alice, and supporting roles in the feature films Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989), Dawn of the Dead (2004), Watchmen (2009), 50/50 (2011) and Three Days in Havana (2012).

Frewer had a semi-regular role on the science fiction series Eureka (2006-12) as Dr Jim Taggart, a veterinarian or glorified dogcatcher who is unleashed on a fictional Oregonian town whenever any sort of natural or unnatural creature needs to be captured.

Matt Frewer is also a committed environmentalist and spokesperson for the Rainforest Action Network.