megan rose greene - filmmaker

Apartment - Atwater Village, Los Angeles
Rose Bowl Flea - Pasadena, Los Angeles

Megan Rose Greene has a classic movie star pout that quickly changes from severe to silly as she talks in enthusiastic bursts. She is immediately warm and chummy, but there is a darkness in her eyes that warns "don't fuck with me". Her Atwater Village apartment is a manicured yet folksy asylum from the plastic world which she dips into. She made us coffee and apologized for using tap water, then she took us on an adventure to Pasadena's Rose Bowl Flea Market. Megan Rose is working hard to preserve her weirdness and doing a damn good job.

What brought you to LA?
I have been in Los Angeles going on nine years. Going to school in Chicago, everyone graduated and went to LA or New York, and I was really sick of being cold. I was, like, “LA, let’s do this!” I could have gone to New York, but it wasn’t… I was getting interviews with agents, who were all assholes, so I was like, “Fuck New York.” So, I came to LA, for the entertainment industry. (Laughs)

How do you define yourself career-wise?
I’m loving the word “filmmaker” recently. It’s so all-inclusive. It kind of encompasses everything, whether I’m working freelance as a 1st AD, or I’m writing, or I’m directing. The only thing it’s not is my first love, which is acting. 

Do you ever introduce yourself as an actor?
Not anymore, no. It’s mortifying.

Have you ever been called a hipster?
You know what? I have never been called a hipster. But, I call myself a hipster. No one has ever pointed at me, and been like, “That is a hipster.” Absolutely, I identify as a hipster. Everyone of our generation with a concept of cool is a hipster. That’s what being socially aware looks like for our generation. And, I know that some other people have disdain for hipsters and the community of hipsters, but I don’t think the disdain is actually directed toward hipsters. I think it’s directed towards normal, grubby assholes who are, like, imitating hipster, which is such a hipster thing to say and collapses in on itself, but, um, yea. I believe in hipsterdom.

What does being a millennial mean to you?
I don’t know. It’s very confusing to me. I feel like millennial is, like, five years younger than me. I’m millennial cusp. Millennial gets tagged with self-absorption and a real, unhealthy interest in technology. But, I really support technology. I’m, like, waiting for the singularity. But, I don’t know about millennials. I don’t know. I’m not sure.

How do you feel connected to your generation?
Huh. I feel very connected. It’s hard not to feel connected when you are bombarded, like willfully so, like participate in the bombardment of everything everyone is doing. And, I know there’s a lot of disdain, again, for people who tell you what they had for breakfast. But, like, I was a kid who wrote everything down. I kept a quote book. I had anxiety if I was not able to remember things. And, so to hear that Brian Bickford from elementary school just got married, like, I would have never known that without the kind of connectivity that our generation has. And, I am super into that. It’s not information that I need to know, but I would rather know than wonder. I would rather have the onslaught of what idiot A, B, and C had for breakfast, but also know that Brian Bickford got married.

Do you care what Brian Bickford had for breakfast?
Of course not. But, I am not offended when anyone posts any of this mundane shit.

What do you love about living in Atwater?
Atwater is like Hufflepuff. It’s not trying to be too fancy, but it’s got really nice and well crafted establishments. And, it’s not concerned with its surrounding neighborhoods. Silverlake is always trying to do everybody up all of the time: “We’re fancier than Santa Monica.” Whatever, they are Slytherin.
But, what I love most about Atwater is that everyone is buddies. All the shop owners know each other. There’s the same corner that everyone is on. People have made it a part of their lives. Everyone is a regular in every establishment. It’s so loving. It’s still East LA; it’s not totally gentrified yet, so you get more voices than just 20-30’s white people like me. It’s a wholesome place with good taste.

What are some of your favorite spots?
Individual Medley. Treehaus. Jacknkife. Some of the best food in Los Angeles is in Atwater Village. I’m looking at you, Proof Bakery. What they make is unreal, like top game, like Farmshop, Huckleberry cannot hold a candle to this place. That’s my fav, fav spot. My boys at Kaldi are pretty right, too. They’re getting in the popup game.
Heartbeat House is great because you can dance your little ass off. A lot of people getting down and weird with Zumba without anyone showing off. There are 55-year-old ladies with knee problems who hobble into class and hobble through the class. And, it pollutes the whole street with Merengue music all of the time, which is righteous and hilarious.

How do you get around the city?
I drive. It’s fine. I just don’t go to Hollywood. I hate going to Hollywood. It’s just going to get worse. I just don’t drive at certain times, it’s fine.

Do you see yourself staying in LA?
Absolutely. I could see maybe moving to New York or London at some point. And, you go to a place and you don’t know if you’re gonna get stuck there, but, I couldn’t imagine never coming home to LA.

What is your favorite thing in your closet?
Well, my short, immediate answer would be this hot pink ball gown that I bought for $8 at this Veteran’s Thrift Store. I have used that thing for so many shoots and Halloweens. It’s a treasure. And, it’s, like, a Quinceañera dress or something for a girl that was my size, so some six-foot-tall sixteen-year-old. (Laughs) It was $80, but I either took the tag off or rubbed out the zero. Anyway, it was suppose to be $80, but I just robbed those Veterans. I needed that dress. And I wasn’t going to give them $80 for it. Sorrrrrry.

What does a typical Sunday look like for you?
Brunch. Ideally some outside time, I’ve got a Huntington membership. Brunch is the most important one though. Going out or making it.

What have you been working on recently?
I am writing two different feature films, and they are both comedies. Well, actually one of them isn’t really a comedy. That’s fine. I also just acted in this crazy Virtual Reality Rom-Traum, what a sick genre name, right? It’s super raw, and I am naked butt ass most of the time, but it’s ugly naked, not sexy naked. I’d lose my mind if it were sexy naked, like a Bond Girl. And because it’s Virtual Reality, like, any person in the headset can just, like, look at my puss the whole time. It’s fine. There is, like, no theatrical content being done for VR right now, it’s totally trailblazing.

What’s your favorite film?
Difficult. Short, immediate answer. Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

What is your favorite record?
LCD Soundsystem's This Is Happening. Masterpiece.

Who would you invite to dinner living or dead?
Oh my God. Umm. Oh, shit. Vita SackVille-West would be pretty right. Or Louis C.K. but I would be asking him out to dinner more than inviting him.

Where do you want to travel to?
Oh, everywhere. There’s not a place I don’t want to go. I would like to pretend I have some roots somewhere and go see Ireland. And, right now, I want to go to Japan.

What inspires you?
Food. What inspires me? There’s that feeling of inspiration you get, and that’s food mostly or, like, a grand vista. But then, what I actually make things about is always men I’m interested in or stupid things that have happened to me.

What is your astrology sign and how does astrology play a part in your life?
I’m a Pisces, moon in Capricorn. Astrology plays a pretty big part in my life. I am a believer. I am an atheist but I believe in Astrology, go figure. And this is the best science I have ever heard - I am not pretending that astrology is a science - but, somebody was like, different grapes in different parts of the world that are grown at different times - vintners are so obsessed with that, why would you think that where and what time you were born wouldn’t affected you? You’re just water like the rest of the planet. It’s not like I follow it, but if someone says Mercury is in retrograde, I’ll be like, “Oh, that’s why all of these things are going wrong.” So, it’s for fun. Romance… all of the time. In fact, my ex, I asked him if he was a Taurus, because I was only looking for a Taurus, and he was a Taurus, and that was a disaster. So, I should probably listen a little more closely to the stars and find myself a good Scorpio with a good head on his shoulders, if one of those exists.

What is your Myer-Briggs personality type?

What are your favorite qualities in a human being?
Open eyes. Somebody you can commune with. I have snobbish taste. There’s some quote I’m going to fuck up from Ira Glass about someone who is an artist - this isn’t even a quote just the general jist: you as an artist make shit, then you refine your taste, and then you look back at the shit you made, and you’re like, that’s horrible, but your taste is more refined now, so you just keep refining your taste, refining your taste, and your art gets better.
The people that I roll with have impossibly high taste, standards for themselves and each other and for the world. I like people who keep honing their taste. And, I like people who care about things. I like to see some fire, something more boiling than lukewarm.

What is your idea of happiness?
Making art and having enough money to not worry about making money. Money can’t buy you happiness, but it absolutely can.

What is your favorite color and flower?
Obligatorily my favorite color is green and flower is rose because my name is Megan Rose Greene. But, neither of those is true. Red is absolutely my favorite color. Favorite flower is the Monte Casino Aster.

Who is your favorite artist?
I mean, Streep. That bitch is a classy broad. There’s nothing you can do to touch that.

Do you have a motto?
A motto? No, not really? Ignorance is not bliss, live the examined life? I dunno, man. I get wary of sound bytes

For further Megan Rose related discovery dive into her social media and follow her @meganrosegreene
Read more about things Megan wanted to talk about but didn't talk about here.

This portrait is part of our ongoing collaboration with Millennial Instinct.

Photography: Camille Cotteverte