We had the good fortune of connecting with Carlos Asse and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Carlos, where are your from? We’d love to hear about how your background has played a role in who you are today?
I was born and raised in a beautiful place called Mexico City, surrounded by its art, culture, diversity, and obviously, its chaos. When I was 18 I lived in the Middle East for a year, and a few years after, before turning 21, I left Mexico again and moved to Los Angeles to pursue my career as a filmmaker.

Growing up, I was a very active child. I spent most of my afternoons training gymnastics and getting ready for competitions and championships. I always mention this when talking about my artistic career because I believe that gymnastics played a very important role in laying the foundations of who I am today. My work ethic, commitment, and passion are shaped by those years when I wouldn’t miss a single practice and would give it my all to be the best I could be. It also taught me tons about sacrifice, perseverance, and dedication.

Another crucial part of my upbringing was Macabi, a youth-led organization focused on non-formal education. I volunteered all my Saturdays and some weekdays to plan activities, camps, and events for younger kids in my community; always focused on universal values, leadership, history among other topics. Very often I find myself comparing the processes I followed then to carry out an activity or event to the process I follow now when writing or planning a film. Macabi gave me some of the best experiences, skills, and my closest friends.

I am lucky enough to be the son of two people who always supported me in what I wanted to do, and filmmaking is no exception. My move to LA was extremely tough and made possible by different sponsors, scholarships, and immense efforts from my parents. My parents and my sister are definitely of huge importance when talking about who and where I am today.
I often find myself pondering on things that happened to me in my childhood that impacted me and shaped my personality and the way I view the world, and every time I do that, I remember another memory or part of my life that had a huge impact in me. I believe that every day we live, every person we meet, everything we do, say or think, impacts us and shapes the way we live and the work we do.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I think my work ethic, passion, and commitment to what I do are key elements when talking about success. At the same time, I sometimes wonder if I’m already successful or if I’m only on the way towards it. I think that’s part of the beauty of life, being able to redefine terms and reframe them to your current situation. There’s been ups and downs along the way, but I always try to make the best out of things. That doesn’t mean I’m always happy and stoked, but I’ve learned how to appreciate and learn from my alone time, my frustration, and my anxiety. It hasn’t been easy, but I’m proud of what I’ve achieved and motivated by what is still left out there to discover and create.

My work is shaped by a passion for storytelling and I strive to create thought-provoking work in an attempt to transform society in any way possible. We often think that transforming society means changing its direction completely, making something so big everybody knows about it. I believe otherwise. I believe that a film, a story, a character, or something even smaller can also transform society. I think that if you impact one person with one of your works, you’ve achieved to create change, and that change builds up and is passed along with time.

Right now I’m excited about a lot of things. I recently finished principal photography for an experimental film and I’m eager to see how it evolves in post-production and to see it finished. I felt I really needed to do something like this and I’m glad I went ahead and made it since I often overthink these things and end up not doing them. I’m also excited about a short film I’m trying to get made. I’m still re-writing and revising the script but the story is there. I hope I can make it by the end of this year. Lastly, I’m also excited for the things to come that I don’t know are coming. I constantly try to find motivation in the unknown. I’ve realized filmmaking is a career where things happen at times or in ways you least expect them to.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
When friends and family visit I always make crazy itineraries packed with museums, galleries, hikes, bars, etc. and then I realize they come here to relax, rest, and take time off. I would make a list of my favorite spots and would let them choose what they like best.

I would start our days with a hike. Runyon, Griffith, and Eaton Canyon are some of my favorites. Then I would take them for a bite. EAT in NoHo, Solar de Cahuenga in Hollywood or Lost Parrot in South Pasadena come to mind. Copa Vida is a great coffee spot if we need some caffeine. I would definitely take them to a Farmers Market and for a walk in Melrose, I always find something new and interesting there. Some of my favorite museums and galleries include LACMA, The Getty Center and The Villa, and Hammer Museum. Jeffrey Deitch, Various Small Fires, and Steve Turner are smaller galleries that I’ve enjoyed in the past.

One of the days I would take them beach hopping and would finish at one of Malibu’s beaches. Lastly, I would take them to The Baked Potato, one of my favorite spots in town, listening to some live jazz or would cook something together at home and watch a movie.

Who’s comin’?

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Of course, as we often say, filmmaking takes an army, and that’s probably true for most things in life.

I thank my parents and my sister, first of all. They’ve been there for me every step of the way. My sponsors, my friends, and collaborators in Mexico and here in LA, who have used their time to see, critic, and help me create my work. Every collaboration teaches me something new, and I’ve been so lucky to have created work with extremely talented people I now call friends. Thank you for lending me your time, skill, and experience.

I also think that a part of this success is thanks to all the people that didn’t believe in me. Those who told me I was crazy, that filmmaking wasn’t something I could make a career out of. They gave me the motivation to prove them wrong. They helped me built up my courage and determination to persevere until I achieved what they told me I wouldn’t be able to.

Website: www.carlosasse.com

Instagram: @carlos.asse

Linkedin: Carlos Asse

Twitter: @carlosasse

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