While Matthew Greenfield has produced all three of his films with the same director, Miguel Arteta, that doesn’t mean they’re permanently joined at the hip. Greenfield has projects in development with Mirage, FilmFour and Barbara De Fina — and some of them will definitely be with different filmmakers.
“I’m interested in both mainstream and less-mainstream projects,” he says, “I want to work with people who are passionate about their films.”
Greenfield met Arteta at Wesleyan University and contemplated writing and directing before finding that producing suited him even better. He co-wrote Arteta’s first feature, “Star Maps,” a superlow-budget effort for which they raised the funding privately.
Their second pic, “Chuck and Buck,” was brought to Arteta and Greenfield’s Flan de Coco Films by scribe Mike White, who also starred in the unusual story of “strange characters who are really very human,” says the soft-spoken Greenfield.
“We did it on a small budget, but it allowed us to have a great freedom,” Greenfield notes of the digitally shot pic produced by Blow Up Pictures.
White also wrote the pair’s recent pic, “The Good Girl,” starring Jennifer Aniston. At $6 million, the film was made on a much larger scale, and was picked up by Fox Searchlight, which handled “Star Maps.”
“I feel lucky to have made three films I care deeply about,” says Greenfield, 33, an L.A. native who works out of Los Angeles’ funky Echo Park district. “Each time we’ve gone to Sundance with the film and sold it there — all different films with different challenges.”
Greenfield and Arteta have three more projects in development: At Sydney Pollack’s Mirage, the duo has a project set up with Geoff Stier adapted from a New Yorker article about the bottem level of the money-laundering business. They also have an original script set up with Barbara De Fina about the relationahip between two L.A. police officers: one white, the other Latino. The third is in the works at FilmFour.
On his long association with Arteta, Greenfield explains: “We have an implicit trust of each other that allows us to work well together and focus our efforts on how to get the best movie done.”
Primary credits: “The Good Girl,” “Chuck and Buck,” “Star Maps”
Definition of a producer: “Someone who can be budget-conscious without losing sight of making the best movie possible.”
Strengths: “Looking beyond the way things are normally done to find the best way to do something.”
Achilles’ heel: “Too many to list.”