interview with David Tembleque


Today we share with you part 3 in the ‘ interviews’ series. By Constant Hoogenbosch and David Tembleque.

If you are a filmmaker and want to participate in an interview for, please contact We like to hear from you!

David Tembleque

What is it that appeals to you about the short film?

A short film for me is the opportunity of reaching the audience and tell them what you want to express, to tell a story, a feeling or a concept.

What qualities do you believe make a good short film?

To get to create a reaction or emotion in your audience in just a few minutes of film, and make on them any kind of reflection so they will keep thinking about it after watching. If you can get them to watch your film more than once, then you have done something right.

To what extent is making short films a stepping stone to making feature films?

I suppose that if you want to direct a feature, the first step is to prove to a producer that you have the ability to tell a story properly condensed in a few minutes.

What is the most challenging aspect of making short films?

To condense a story and generate emotions in just a few minutes. I was ambitious and tried to thrill the people in just 3 minutes. It is not a simple task to get into the emotions of someone in such a short time, but I was able to make a lot of people cry, so I feel like I succeeded.

Do you have a preference to a certain genre?

I adapt my story to the means that I have, so I create it thinking about what I can actually film. I really like short films that make you think and have any kind of reflection. When you don’t have money or means, the only thing that you can do is to try to be original and creative with the story.

What do you like most when making a short film – writing the script – directing – camera?

For me everything is about the script. It is the most important part. Also, when I am editing, the thing that I love the most is the colour correction, because of my work as a photographer.

Do you work with a script – where do you get the inspiration from?

I get the inspiration from life and things that happened to me or to people close to me. Sometimes just a small idea or anecdote can be something interesting to work with.

Do you leave room for improvisation?

A lot. ‘For Dear Tom’ was completely improvised and I didn’t expect it at all. For my next work I had the idea and the script, but I was travelling abroad and filming everything I could. I wasn’t sure what exact images I was going to get, so I created the final text after seeing the footage.

Did you receive funding for your project?


How did you go about assembling a film crew and actors?

My film was very personal and I did everything by my own. I didn’t have actors, and I edited everything by myself.

What did you use to edit the film?

I worked with Premiere pro, Davinci Resolve, and After Effects & Adobe lightroom to colour correct the raw footage.

What camera did you shoot on?

I used the Blackmagic pocket cinema camera. It is a very tricky camera because of the limited the battery time and it shakes a lot, but the image quality is absolute amazing, and filming in Raw footage gave me the opportunity of creating a cinematographic look with a camera of just € 1.000, – .

Could you name one or two filmmakers that you consider great influences?

For the short film that I made and the new one that I am working with I was very influenced by the work of Wong Kar-wai. The beauty and composition of his images, the saturated colours, his characters, the cities that work like a character too, the pauses, the silences, the rate, the sensibility… I admire him so much.

What are you working on next? Do you already have a new project in mind?

I went to China with a script and filmed for 15 days in the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guilin and Hong Kong. 3 crossways and related stories about the missing opportunities that we have in life and the bravery of making the choices that we have to make even if we don’t want to. I am editing it now, but you can watch some movie stills here.!what-if/cjg9

What advice would you give to other short filmmakers?

Study a lot. Read books about script (I recommend ‘Writing fiction’ by gotham writers and ‘Story’ by robert mckee).  Think about cinematography and how to tell your story in a simple but beautiful way. Try to think about what you want to tell, why do you want to tell it and why people should be interested in it.

Learn to edit using Premiere, final cut or Avid, colour correction with Davinci or speedgrade, photography, composition and colour theory.

If you can’t, try to look for talented people to work with and help you with the things that you are not able to do.

And try to film every time you can, no matter what you film. The more time you spend with the camera, the more skill and vision you will get. If you don’t do it you will feel totally lost when you actually get to that day of filming.

Use Vimeo as your personal bible, it’s full of amazingly talented people there. Try to copy and learn what professionals do, from composition to colour, cinematography, equipment they use, etc.

If you ever feel that you can’t do It, just remember that Tarantino’s first film was so bad that a producer told him that he would never be able to get into the cinema industry. He didn’t care, he tried harder and his next film was Reservoir dogs, which is an absolute timeless masterpiece.

So the most important: work, work and keep working. It is the only way of improving!


If you are a filmmaker and want to participate in an interview for, please contact We like to hear from you!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here