“Matty has wonderful instincts, and that’s not a slight, that’s a compliment (to) someone who doesn’t have the breadth of experience or even the training …”
~ Paris Qualles, Screenwriter
Born on November 26, 1971 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City, Matthew “Matty” Statisfield was reared in the Red Hook Houses, one of the city’s largest housing projects. He would later be known as “Matty Rich.” The son of a Vietnam veteran, Matty wrote film shorts as a young teen, including what would be the basis of Straight Out of Brooklyn.
This film was expanded from an 8-minute short that Rich completed when he was seventeen years old. It was financed by credit cards; monies from family members and friends; and $77,000 (USD) in donations from listeners after appearing on a WBLS radio show during drive time. He also was on WLIB, another popular station in New York City. Those casted to star believed so much in the project that they worked for free.