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Lemendu Films

Lemendu Films is Joaquín Asencio’s attempt to invigorate the audiovisual scene in Andalusia. After studying at the Tisch School of Arts in New York, he decided to come back and accept the challenge of making films at home.

By:  Antonio Palacios
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Audio-visual production company
Birth: 2004
Location: Seville
Stands out for: being a meeting point for new talent and receiving several international prizes
Budget for their latest short: 60.000 €

Joaquín Asencio is the brains behind Lemendu Films, a company that from small beginnings is now making headway as a commercial success in Andalusia. He studied at the prestigious New York University film school (Tisch School of the Arts), where legendary directors like Martin Scorsese, Ang Lee and Oliver Stone also developed their talents. In 2001 he directed El Censor, a short film which went from being a university project to a hit film at over fifty festivals worldwide and the winner of numerous prizes including third place at the New York First Run Film Festival and Best Script at the Malaga Film Festival.

Encouraged by the growing trend for successful Spanish films, he decided to dedicate his life to cinema on returning to Spain. After difficulties in finding funding for his first ideas, he founded his own company in April 2004. His aim was to “produce films that could be promoted and distributed in Spain and that would also attract an international audience”.

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The short film Hombres de paja stands out among his first projects. The story was reminiscent of the American film noir genre with significant Andalusian overtones. The project, his first commercial attempt as a filmmaker, was shot in several locations and needed a large creative and production team. It received seven international prizes, including the prize for Best International Short Film at the Staten Island Film Festival in New York, a special mention at the Los Angeles Short Film Festival and the prize for Best Drama at the Imperial Beach International Film Festival in California. Many of those initially involved in Hombres de paja have gone on to carve succesful careers in the film and television industry. Paco Tous is now a well known star on the popular Spanish television show, Los hombres de Paco. The director of photography, Álvaro Gutiérrez received a prize at the Strasbourg Film Festival for his work in Hombres de paja and two years later was nominated for a Goya award for Under the Stars by Félix Viscarret.

According to Asencio, the most difficult part of setting up a production company is “getting the support from public institutions. This backing is vitally important as it often ensures subsequent support from the private commercial sector and therefore financial resources to realise the film.” Lemendu Films also produces music videos, documentaries and feature films. The company produced the music video for Esa niña es by Salva Martín and the documentary Pueblos sin camino, co-produced by Nanuk Producciones Audiovisuales, one of the most pioneering production companies in Aragón.

Lemendu also promotes itself as a commercial company offering a variety of audiovisual services. “Attracting clients in such a competitive sector with so many other well established production companies is difficult,” explains Asencio. Despite the growing number of production companies in Andalusia, Asencio is not optimistic with regards to the general audiovisual scene; “People make more and more films here but they don’t make them often enough to really strengthen the filmmaking industry”.

In the meantime, Lemendu Films is now going through a period of expansion and has two feature films in the pipeline. They also recently acquired new software to offer High Definition digital post-production services. “Lemendu is open to films of any genre so long as they attract an international audience and have a reasonable budget. My own personal preference, if I was a director, would be comedy”.

Indeed, Asencio continues to successfully work on his personal projects and non-commercial short films. The most recent is La última boda, funded with the support of the Andalusian government’s Ministry of Culture. The company is also starting to develop training programmes and organised its first cinema workshop in 2006. Their aim is to share experiences with other professionals, taking into consideration the opportunities that new technologies like the internet can provide in terms of the creation and distribution of audiovisual products.


Getting there?

Lemendu Films
Avda. de la República Argentina, 21
41011, Sevilla

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El 30 March 2009 a las 9:09 PM, Alexis de Vilar dijo...

Estimado Joaquin,
He descubierto con alegría tu existencia hace unos minutos. Perdona pero estoy algo desconectado del cine. Te felicito por tus éxitos ya que se lo dificil que es esta profesión. Me gustaria poder contactar contigo sobre algunos de mis proyectos. En los ultimos años he estado mas bien focalizando en la fotografia. Si visitas mi pagina web veras algunas fotos. tengo una novela “La Selva mecánica” que creo sería una pelicula excelente. Escríbeme cuando te sobre un minuto. También queria hablarte del European Film Institute que funde en Cadiz en el 2002 y tengo en un cajón. Pienso que con tu trayectoria puede interesarte el que lo resucitemos juntos. Un abrazo, Alexis

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El 13 July 2011 a las 2:14 AM, Fco Javier Morete dijo...

Hola Joaquin he conocido este año a tus padres en el Rocio y hablando de muchas cosas la casualidad de saber que uno de sus hijos que eras tu,eramos del mismo gremio.Me gustaria poder ponerme en contacto contigo.mi email es mi telefono 649023536.gracias.

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