Producer Angel Cassani and Joel M. Gonzales Join Forces with Matte Pictures
Behind every successful film is a powerful production team. When it comes to creating talented teams, producer Angel Cassani is a proven master. One of Cassani’s most recent collaborations includes cofounding Matte Pictures with fellow producer and award-winning filmmaker Joel M. Gonzales.
“The most important quality for a producer is knowing how to choose the projects and the team members,” says Cassani. “I think that it is important not to be a boss but a teammate, I want each artist to feel comfortable in the set and also to feel listened to when exposing an opinion.”
With several films in the works, such as “The Sister Assassins,” featuring action villain and Texas Film Award winner Danny Trejo (“From Dusk Till Dawn”) and Mayra Leal (“The Wisdom to Know the Difference,” “Rosewood”), as well as the “Power and Glory” and “Can You Hear Me,” Cassani and Gonzales have big plans for the future.
Cassani, who first built a strong career for himself in the finance industry, parlayed his skills into the world of film production back in 2009 with the film “Never Surrender.” Since then, he’s produced numerous feature films including “Death Warrior,” “No Way Out,” “Mi Amor,” “On the Other Side” and more.
“After filming together in California, Atlanta and Mexico we decided to found Matte Pictures in 2019,” says Gonzales. “It was the outcome of a great work dynamic, which led us to create the company so that we could have a greater impact in Hollywood.”
Gonzales, who earned the Audience Favorite Award from the Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles and the Festival and Jury Awards from the Monaco Charity Film Festival for his 2016 film “Crave: The Fast Life,” is known for his work as the producer behind the films “According to Plan,” “Prayers in the Dark,” “Shiner,” “Followed Home” and more.
“We met each other during the making of “The Pastor”,” recalls Cassani about meeting Gonzales back in 2017.
Cassani and Gonzales were both producers on the film “The Pastor,” which stars multi-award winning actor Kevin Sorbo, who rose to international success with his recurring role as Hercules in the series “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys,” Tayor Kalupa from the crime series “The Fix” and T.C. Stallings from the MovieGuide and GMA Dove Award winning film “War Room.” Currently in post-production and expected for release this year, “The Pastor,” which follows a pastor (Hector Echavarria) dedicated to bringing a town overrun by gang violence back to the faith, paved the way for Cassani and Gonzales to form an ongoing collaboration.
“During the filming we developed a really strong bond,” says Cassani. “We have a relationship based on respect and creative freedom. Apart from being an awesome human being, both personally and professionally, I have always felt that Joel has given me the space to exhibit my ideas.”
The mutual trust and respect these two producers have for one another, coupled with their creative talents and their love for film have all been integral to the strong collaboration they’ve formed. The process of making a film can be a long and arduous journey so it’s vital that filmmakers choose their team members wisely. After working with Cassani on numerous productions since “The Pastor” and seeing firsthand his ability to form strong teams, raise funds and back creative projects that are destined for success, Gonzales attests that there’s no better producer to have joined forces with than Angel Cassani.
“It is his work ethic, his constant attention to detail, his communication style, and his strong ambition to produce films in the United States,” says Gonzales about what makes Cassani such a solid producer.
He adds, “Angel has a very positive mindset and that’s transmitted to the team, he is very respectful of others personal space and points of view. He is constantly supervising the team without bashing others, which is very valuable for the work dynamic.”
Moving forward together, one of their first big films that is set to begin filming next year is “The Sister Assassins,” which is being directed by Joaquin F. Palma, another longtime collaborator of Cassani and Gonzales.
“It was Joaquin Palma, who also wrote the script that pitched me this movie, we have a life long relationship,” says Cassani. “It’s a revenge story that I found very enjoyable and also very interesting.”
The action film “The Sister Assassins” follows Soli, played by Mayra Leal, and her younger sister Victoria, played by Mayra Nuñez, two siblings who harbour deep seeded anger after watching and surviving the brutal massacre of their family. After learning to channel that anger into an all-out crusade against the villainous people who’ve spilled innocent blood, they earn a folkloric reputation as “La Hermosa Muerte“ a.k.a “The Beautiful Death,” bringing fear into the hearts of evil men.
As an executive producer, Cassani is deeply involved in his projects. For “The Sister Assassins” he will specifically be overseeing the casting, filming locations and seeking out the best talent to fill the lead roles in the overall team.
Cassani will also be the executive producer on the dramatic action film “Power and Glory,” which will be directed by Joel M. Gonzales and was was cowritten by Gonzales and Joaquin Palma. The film, which is in pre-production, follows two New Orleans homicide detectives who are reluctantly recruited by the Archangel Michael to battle the forces of darkness. The other project on deck for Gonzales and Cassani is “Can You Hear Me,” which tells the story of a rapper’s celebrity world of money and fame being turned upside down after an innocent fan is murdered.
With so many projects in the works it’s clear that Cassani and Gonzales have struck up a strong collaboration; and audiences can definitely look forward to seeing some riveting productions coming out of their company, Matte Pictures.