Matthew Mishory | Director & Writer
"Matthew Mishory has managed to capture an austere beauty of a kind little known by all but the likes of Baudelaire." - Film International
Goldberg Variations is filmmaker Matthew Mishory's fifth feature film. Having shot all over the world, this new production, his most ambitious yet, is a return to roots. It is an attempt to better understand, through art, the country his Holocaust-escapee grandparents helped establish nearly seventy years ago.
Mishory was named a “rising talent” by Variety. His second feature, the documentary Absent, was filmed in the remotest reaches of rural Moldova in the former Soviet Union. It was designated a “must-see” film by Cineuropa. Cine Maldito named Absent one of the top ten films of the year.
Matthew's 2018 television film No Place of Exile, about the Jewish modernist composer and pianist Artur Schnabel, premiered on the Arte network. The film was shot in Switzerland, Italy, Vienna, and Berlin, utilizing unexpected textures (super8, drone footage, back-projection) and the great German actor Udo Samel to chart Schnabel's course through the emotional and physical landscapes of the European 20th century.
As a commercial director, Matthew shot the national "Powerful Performance" campaign for TCL, starring NBA All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo. It was featured on the 2019 Super Bowl broadcast. He has also directed television and digital spots for top brands such as Turkish Airlines (on-location in Turkey, Serbia, and Romania), August Home, and Roku.
Matthew's feature film debut, the 35mm Joshua Tree, 1951: A Portrait of James Dean was released theatrically in the United States, the UK, and Germany. The San Francisco Chronicle declared Joshua Tree “mesmerizing and sexy”, and Artforum pronounced it “a nuanced portrayal of an entire era.”
Previously, Matthew's short film, Delphinium, about the late artist Derek Jarman, was permanently installed in the British Film Institute's National Film Archive. The film was subsequently re-released in the UK by the BFI as part of the year-long Jarman2014 celebration and screened at the Tate Britain museum in 2017.
Golan Friedman | Co-Writer
Co-writer Golan Friedman was born in Israel and raised in Florence, Italy, and Jerusalem. He studied at David Hartman's famous yeshiva and at Tel Aviv University, where he received an M.A. in Diplomatic Studies and worked as a member of the University’s research team for Peace Process negotiations. During his military service, Golan was an IDF investigator, stoking a passion for storytelling.
Friedman went on to a prominent career as a journalist for Israeli newspaper Maariv. He covered the untold saga of Syrian Jews smuggled into Israel by the Navy, revealed the secret diary of Ron Arad, the kidnapped Israeli navigator, and conducted the first interview with the captain of hijacked Italian cruise ship Archille Lauro. Friedman later worked as a researcher and writer for popular television series “The Yehoram Gaon Show” before moving to the U.S. in 2009.
Golan currently lives with his wife and two children in Los Angeles, where he pursues his dual passions of screenwriting and study of the Jewish mystical tradition.
Bradford Schlei | Producer
Stone Canyon Founder Bradford L. Schlei is an acclaimed filmmaker and financier who was born and raised in Los Angeles, attended Harvard School, Bennington College, and Yale Law School. Previously, he worked for the law-firm of Herman and Wallach and the legal department of CAA.
As Co-founder of the film finance fund Stone Canyon Entertainment and of Lindemann Entertainment Group, Schlei was responsible for the financing and production of such indie powerhouse films such as Swingers and Slingblade. For fifteen years, Bradford has served as partner and Head of Production of Muse Productions, creators of such critically acclaimed films as American Psycho, Sofia Coppola’s directorial debut Virgin Suicides, Buffalo 66, Irreversible, and Bully.
As a producer, Schlei’s credits include Spun, Some Folks Call It A Slingblade, Swingers, Dogtown, Welcome To Hollywood, and The Killer Inside Me, starring Kate Hudson, Jessica Alba, Simon Baker, and Casey Affleck. Most recently Schlei produced The Trust (2016), with Nicolas Cage and Elijah Wood. A frequent guest speaker on the subjects of Film, Literature, and Art, Schlei has guest lectured at USC Film School MFA writing program and Columbia University Film School. Schlei is a well-known contemporary art collector and critic.
Rob Levine | Producer
Grateful Films Co-founder Rob Levine has been a production executive in the film and television industry for over fifteen years. A native New Yorker and graduate of Columbia University and NYU Film School, Rob has worked for a variety of production companies, including Wolf Films (Emmy Award Winning Producer of the "Law & Order" franchise), New Line Cinema, and NBC/Universal, where he ran three-time Emmy Award winning actor Peter Falk’s production company. While working for Mr. Falk, Rob was responsible for developing the last three Columbo movies for ABC.
A voting member of the Television Academy of Arts and Sciences and a Steering Committee member of the Caucus for Producers, Writers, and Directors, Rob has also produced and directed a variety of music videos, commercials, television pilots and indie film projects and has written more than a dozen screenplays and teleplays including the golf movie Seven Days in Utopia, starring Academy Award Winners Robert Duvall and Melissa Leo.
Research Collaborators | Development Phase
Dr. Avishai Bar-Asher, Professor of Humanities and Jewish Studies, Hebrew University of Jerusalem — Project Consultant/Researcher, ancient Jewish texts.
Dr. Gideon Elazar, Ben Gurion University — Project Consultant/Researcher, Tzfat.