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José Luis Dibildos

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As a popular Spanish producer working under the strict censorship of the Franco regime, José Luis Dibildos' agenda to gain attention for Spain's filmmakers by creation of "popular cinema with a critical bite" may never have worked out exactly as he had envisioned it, though his films nevertheless struck a powerful chord with the country's general population. Born in Madrid in April 1929, soft-spoken Dibildos earned a law degree from Granada University before embarking on a lucrative film career. With the creation of Agata Films in 1956, Dibildos was well on his way to living his dream of becoming a filmmaker who would produce movies that would appeal to mainstream audiences. Numerous comedies produced in the late '50s did indeed appeal to local audiences seeking distraction during a time of intense social revolution, and such later works as Cyrano et d'Artagnan (1963) and The Black Tulip (1964) found continued success with their overt sentimentality and identification with the downtrodden masses. Appreciation for Dibildos' film could still be felt at the turn of the new millennium, when he was presented with an honorary lifetime Goya in 2001. In early June 2002, Dibildos died of a heart attack in Madrid. He was 72, and was survived by a wife and daughter who both work as popular television hosts. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi



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