Antonio Belli One of the judges of “THE WORLD’S BEST” Mexico / TV & Film Director

Tuesday February 26, 2019

By: Sonia Bermejo


ALBERTO BELLI is an award winning director (DGA) born in Mexico. He is a computer science engineer turned director. Belli’s work has been recognized twice by the EMMYs foundation for best comedic short film. He won the Young Director Award at CANNES LIONS, and he is an alumni of the Sony TV Directors Program. His diverse body of work includes directing TV SPOTS for brands like Tide, Crest, Snickers, Pepsi, T-Mobile, BCBG MaxAzria, and Warner Bros Interactive.

His YouTube VIRALS, with tens of MILLIONS of views, have been featured countless of times in the national and international press with rave reviews. His short films and music videos have been in competition at OSCAR QUALIFYING festivals such as SXSW, Austin Film Festival, Cannes, San Diego Latino FF, New Orleans FF, among many others. His latest projects include directing for the hit NETFLIX show “The House of Flowers” and his upcoming feature film “The Mexican Dream”.)

MUIM: Can you tell me a little something about you, where you came from? How was your childhood?

AB: I’m from Guadalajara, Mexico. I studied computer science engineering and then moved to LA to fulfill my childhood dream of becoming a director by getting my MFA (Masters in Film Academy) at USC. I had a really fun childhood. My Dad loves films and his passion was contagious — little did we know, I’ll be doing that full-time. It’s a tough business to break into, so I’m very fortunate to have very positive and encouraging parents and wife, so when things get though reminded of what it’s important.

MUIM: How would you describe yourself? How did you get into film directing?

AB: I’m a storyteller. I love making people laugh! I’ve focused most of my work that includes TV episodes, commercials, and virals entertaining people. When someone watches what I do, I want them forget about their problems and have a great time. Right after film school, I got lucky that a few shorts I did, went globally viral and were screened at various film festivals that opened the doors for me.

MUIM: How do you describe yourself?

AB: I’ve always been a bit of an introvert. Doing “The World’s Best” has really pushed my comfort zone. Not knowing when James Corden would ask for my input has kept me alert at all times. I’m used to being on the other side of the camera. To suddenly see all the camera pointed at me has really forced me grow and not be shy. Aside of meeting the amazing judges from around the world, that’s the one thing I value the most about this experience.

MUIM:Who is your role model or where do you get your inspirations? What is your motivation?

AB: I have three filmmaking role models. Steven Spielberg, because he is the one that inspired me to become a director by making my favorite movies like Jurassic Park and Indiana Jones. Second, Billy Wilder. His ability to tell compelling stories that are as hilarious as they are heartbreaking is something I aspire to do. And last but not least, fellow Mexican filmmaker Alfonso Cuarón. His path is what dreams are made of. He’s been able to have an eclectic career of directing highly commercial films like Harry Potter followed by an intimate sci-fi that pushed the VFX industry, and also managed to do independent films like “Roma” (my favorite movie of 2018) and “Y Tu Mama También” that celebrates Mexico while also reflecting on it.

MUIM:Do you have ongoing projects?

AB: I have two features in development. An action/ adventure comedy set at the Latino division of FOX that starts shooting in the fall. And a horror/comedy to be shot independently sometime this summer in LA. I’m also going back to direct for the Netflix hit series “La Casa de las Flores” in season 2. Which made me very excited as the cast and crew became like my family in season 1.

MUIM:Do you reside in Los Angeles? How do you find living in Los Angeles?

AB: I live in LA and I really enjoy it. It’s a city full of energy where you can do and find anything you want. Hiking, surfing, skiing? We got it — Italian, Mexican, Filipino award-winning food? We also got it. The only bad thing is… traffic and being away from my family. LA is a city where, if you work hard, your dreams can come true.

MUIM:What are your plans in the next few years, career wise?

AB: I’m actively working on directing projects in all mediums: TV, commercials and movies. In five years, I hope to have found a balance between the three and have managed to get bigger and better projects. My plan is to do a studio movie, have my own TV series, and direct a Super Bowl commercial. Hopefully in the next five years, I’ll be in the path of doing all three!

MUIM:What can you advise who are starting in film making who have the same ambitions and passions as yours?

AB: “Never stop believing in yourself!” It is an advice I got from my parents. To be able to make it, you have to convince a massive amount of people to give you a chance and most of the time, it won’t happen and you’ll feel like a failure. So the more you believe in yourself, the easier it will be to convince other people you have what it takes. And also, if you plan to be a director, take many screenwriting lessons! When I was in film school, I didn’t realize how much I would have to write in order to get directing jobs.

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