I used to have it all working with the gatos ati_remote kernel module and lirc. but this "bundled" in kernel module doesn't put events on the /dev/lircd device node but seems to pretend to be another keyboard type device creating events.
You can use xev and see the event details when you push a button. eg pushing the number "1" on the remote gives the same event as pushing "1" on the keyboard. However, not all the buttons are mapped to existing keys..... eg Play is not mapped (although Pause is!)
I still need to figure out how to configure it against xine. maybe something using xmodmap.??
This is covers the ati_remote and lirc route...