Charlie’s most recent production, “Freaky Deaky,” is an adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s book. He worked with Christian Slater and Crispin Glover during the production, the film premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival where the rights were acquired by eOne, and the movie released officially in 2013.
Charles is slated to produce the upcoming TV series Mexican High in 2015, a show based on the novel by Lisa Monroy.
Charlie has a passion for storytelling that led him to develop and direct an adaptation of Truman Capote’s work, “The Grass Harp.” The atmospheric film would help Charlie win the Director of the Year award from The Academy of Family Films & Family Television. It follows three Southern misfits who take up residence in a tree house. Matthau directed a stellar cast including Piper Laurie, Sissy Spacek, Walter Matthau, Jack Lemmon, Mary Steenburgen, Nell Carter, and Edward Furlong. “The Grass Harp” premiered in October of 1996, distributed by Fine Line Features, and it remains a classic film.
Matthau’s work has been well-received by critics. Lawrence Van Gelder of the New York Times reports: “A success: a sweet, wise, funny, poignant film from producer director Charles Matthau who has extracted performances that are expert, sharp and distinctive.” Says Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times: “A beguiling film in every way.”
“’The Grass Harp’” succeeds so admirably it speaks volumes about Charles Matthau’s own inimitable talents…a polished, touching insightful and exceedingly sensitive effort,” says Wade Major of Entertainment Today.
Charlie made his feature directorial debut at age 24 with the offbeat comedy “Doin’ Time.” The film was selected as one of the Council of Film’s “10 Best Films of 1990,” and Charlie received a nomination for Best Director by The Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films.
The Matthau family was also honored in September of 1997, when The American Film Institute gave out the first ever Platinum Circle Award. The award was created to honor an entire family of talented artists.
Charlie also directed “Her Minor Thing,” a romantic comedy starring Estella Warren, Christian Kane, and Michael Weatherly. Jim Meyers wrote and produced the film, which was released to favorable reviews in early 2007. It is currently a brisk seller on DVD.
Matthau also recently directed the musical “Baby-O,” set in the Las Vegas jazz world.
Charlie has directed his father Walter on many occasions. One of the more well-known pairings was with Carol Burnett in “The Marriage Fool (aka Love After Death). The story follows a widower who falls for another woman, despite the disapproval of his children. The film debuted in 1998 on CBS, and it was ranked the #1 program of the week with a 14.0 Nielsen rating and a 23 share.
Charlie also directed “Mrs. Lambert Remembers Love,” characterized by the Hollywood Reporter as “…wise, affecting television that should not be missed.” This moving film portrays a woman who takes to the road to save her grandson from becoming a foster child.
During his early years as a film graduate, Matthau wrote and directed “The Duck Film.” The quirky movie that is still popular on the University of Southern California campus.