This Canadian was raised in Montreal and Toronto, where he made his first short films while still in grade eight. After high school, Guterman crossed the border to attend prestigious Harvard University to earn a physics degree.
Keeping his artistic side in check, Guterman would return to his native land every summer to study animation at Sheridan College of Art. He used this artistic drive to create illustrations for The Harvard Lampoon.
His interest in filmmaking was renewed after completing a 15-minute documentary for one of his courses at Harvard.
After university, he moved to Los Angeles and worked on computer graphics and as a script reader for Columbia Pictures.
Being in Los Angeles, Guterman took advantage of the educational facilities there and attended USC School of Cinema to further his film knowledge. During his time there, he sold two feature-length scripts to major film studios and co-wrote a script for the Tales from the Crypt series.
The latter caught the attention of Rob Zemeckis and HBO.
He wrote the short, Headless, which earned rave reviews at USC's First Look Festival and won the Grand Jury Prize at Worldfest in Huston.
With his graduation from USC in 1996, and the exposure from Headless, Guterman found his first directing gig over a video game based on the Goosebumps series. He next had the opportunity to direct several sequences for the computer-animated film, Antz.