On Sunday night at the 90th annual Academy Awards, Guillermo del Toro took home the award for achievement in the direction of The Shape of Water. It was the third prize of the night of the film, which also brought statues home for Original Score and Production Design. The film entered the evening with 13 nominations in general.
The filmmaker born in Mexico followed the initiative of many other winners and immediately focused on issues of diversity and inclusion. "I am an immigrant," he said, checking the name of Salma Hayek, Gael García Bernal, and several other Mexican artists who were present in the room. "And in the last 25 years, I've been living in a country of my own, part of it is here, part of it is in Europe, part of it is everywhere, because I think the best thing that art does, and what It makes our industry, it is to erase the lines in the sand when the world tells us to make them deeper ".
It was a particularly appropriate sentiment for The Shape of Water, a film that focuses on the fear and alienation that some may feel when confronting people and things they may not understand. In Del Toro's film, she is personified by the remarkable hatred, and improbable love, that a mermaid man encounters when he is confined in a Baltimore lab to be studied.
The celebrated filmmaker had previously been nominated for his 2007 film Pan & # 39; s Labyrinth. The crop of nominees for Best Director this year included several other Hollywood favorites, as well as a couple of disruptive upstarts. Christopher Nolan was nominated for his work in Dunkirk, while Paul Thomas Anderson received a nomination for his period drama Phantom Thread.
But the two new directors who presented some of the most intense speculation before the night. Greta Gerwig was nominated for her work on Lady Bird, making her the fifth woman in Oscar history to receive the Best Director nomination, while her first director Jordan Peele, known for her work on the comedy show Centrally Comedy Central Key & Peele, was also nominated for his subversive horror comedy Get Out. Peele won the Oscar for the original Get Out script earlier in the evening.