Originally from Mexico City, Fidel Arizmendi has lived and worked in the United States for the last twenty-five years.  His bicultural and bilingual upbringing imparts a unique outlook to his work.  He attended the Minneapolis College of Art and Design where he obtained his B.F.A. in Environmental Design and Film.  During his college years, Fidel worked as a production designer for the world renowned Children’s Theater of Minneapolis, where he was instrumental in developing the set design for the productions of “The Little Match Girl” and “Alice in Wonderland.”  Upon graduation, he moved to California to devote his passion to the film and television industries. 

In 1986 he joined Paramount Pictures, and for the next five years, he sharpened his skills as a writer while working on such distinguished shows as “Family Ties,” “Mission Impossible,” “Tim Conway’s Funny America,” “Down Home,” and “Dear John.”  These experiences prepared him to later join the writing staffs of two of Hollywood’s most prominent and successful shows in the history of television; “Roseanne” and “Home Improvement.” 

While working on “Home Improvement” at the Disney Studios, and under the tutelage of Matt Williams, (creator of Roseanne and Home Improvement”) Fidel wrote “Crossover Summer,” a bicultural coming-of-age piece about four girls growing up in the 70’s in the border towns of El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.  His third feature-length screenplay at the time, “Crossover Summer” was optioned by Disney studios, and later on by Warner Bros.  For the next couple of years he wrote several screenplays and worked on a freelance basis for various television shows, including the celebrated sci-fi series: “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” 

In 1996, Fidel realized there was an opportunity to create original Spanish-language programming.  He joined forces with filmmakers Sergio Arau and Yareli Arizmendi and, together, they developed, wrote, and produced the first-ever pilot for a Spanish language sit-com in the USA.   The series follows the misadventures of Rey Combo and his wife Dolores Deluxe when they immigrate to the USA.  Dolores, a famous telenovela star, suffers from amnesia, and the only identities she seems to remember are those of the characters she’s played in the past. 

Fidel’s creative work began to be more recognized by the Hollywood Hispanic community.  He was sought after for many projects including rewriting a screenplay for award winning director Alfonso Arau, ("Like Water for Chocolate,” “A Walk in the Clouds”), he is also greatly responsible for adapting and translating Arau’s early work, so that English audiences may enjoy it. 

Once again, exploring the Latino experience in the USA, Fidel developed “Between Borders” an original series for celebrated actress and producer Salma Hayek.  The situation comedy deals with the life of Teresa Gil, a Mexican born woman, educated in the USA, trying to fit in a world where cultures clash.  

Foreseeing the importance of the rapidly growing Latino community in the USA, and aware of Hollywood’s neglect for this sector of the population, Fidel saw an opportunity.  He decided to educate the Hollywood mainstream on the nature of the Latino experience in the United States.  The year was 1997, and although there was a lot of initial resistance, he knew he was on the right track.  He set out to break these barriers with an unprecedented move.  He joined the world of advertising. 

He understood that, in advertising, lay the key to changing the fearsome mindset of Hollywood.  The idea was simple; show Latinos for who they are, in non-stereotypical roles and let those images begin to pepper the airwaves.  In time, the clichés would dissipate and new images would replace them, all the while raising awareness of Latinos as a viable consumer group.  The key, however, was in Hispanic advertising, and paramount to its success was the need for these Latino ads to leapfrog from the Spanish networks on to English ones.

Fueled by his vision, Fidel joined, as an Associate Creative Director, La Agencia de Orcí; one of the leading National advertising agencies focused on the growing US Latino Market.  During his tenure, Fidel lead the way in persuading clients to broaden their Hispanic messaging from only Spanish, to Spanish and English; a bold an unconventional move at the time.  He produced and created award-winning campaigns for such clients as Honda, Washington Mutual, Allstate, Verizon and Children’s Bureau.  The outcome of his insights proved gratifying consumer results.  Under his watch, Honda became the number one brand sold to Hispanics.  For five years straight, he was awarded special recognition for his visionary thinking and contributions to the growth of La Agencia.  Today he is considered one of the foremost experts on the growing Latino market.  

Fidel’s unique background as a writer for English and Spanish television, and his advertising experience enabled him to build an entirely new field of consulting at Orcí.  He became an adviser to English media giants on how to court the elusive and growing Latino viewer.  Among the clients who sought his unique perspective were, DreamWorks for “El Dorado,” Disney for “The Emperor’s New Groove,” Viacom for “Dora the Explorer,” CBS for “Bold and the Beautiful” and ABC for “The George Lopez Show.”  In the case of “Bold and the Beautiful,” Fidel created the character backgrounds and storyline arcs for two new positive Latino roles for the series.  The results were immediate.  The ratings spiked, influenced by the new Hispanic viewer.

While Fidel’s career in advertising continued to grow, he never turned his back on his entertainment roots, and his desire to write stories about the Latino experience in the USA.  In 2001, he joined forces with celebrated, and award-winning comedy writer, Rick Najera.  Together they developed the television series, “Buford Gomez” for Viacom.  A modern “All in the Family,” the series focused on the life of Buford Gomez, a Mexican-American immigration officer.  Following this effort came “Who’s Wearing the Pants?”  A joined collaboration with acclaimed actress and producer Salma Hayek, creating yet one more series for her and Sony Pictures.  The series took place at the Los Angeles City Hall, fifty years into the future.  The government was 95% Latino, the population had flipped, and White’s were now the minority.

Always ahead of his time, seeking innovative and ground-braking ideas, Fidel’s thinking has broadened towards the future of advertising, a future in which advertising and entertainment will inevitably merge.  This new paradigm of branded entertainment will pave the road as a way to help advertisers stand out from the clutter, while making their messaging stronger as story content and brand identity fuse together.  Fidel has begun developing and presenting to broadcasters, advertisers and producers a number of branded entertainment properties.   Among these, is an innovative automotive concept that focuses on a car manufacturer’s full-line of vehicles, and makes the cars integral to the storylines of the show.  While Fidel continues to develop award-winning campaigns to an assortment of clients, his interest has turned towards directing as well.  Most recently he created, produced and directed the award-winning on-air branding campaign for the national launch of the LATV network, a bilingual musical channel catering to the coveted 15 to 24 demographic. 

Fidel’s appetite for discovery is what makes him a multi-faceted artist, equally adept at being a leader of a team, or being a strong independent producer of creative material. He currently runs and operates his own advertising and consultancy firm, KR8TIVE GUNS, and is also producing several feature film projects.