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Director Guillermo del Toro: I was in a difficult place for the past ten years

The Shape of Water director, whose film has been nominated in 13 categories at Oscars 2018, says that he wanted to make a love story, after making a slew of ‘increasingly dark movies’.

hollywood Updated: Feb 20, 2018 12:04 IST
Samarth Goyal
Samarth Goyal
Hindustan Times
Guillermo Del Toro,Hollywood,The Shape of Water
Director Guillermo del Toro says that The Shape of Water (nominated for 13 Oscars this year) is a life-affirming film in these divisive times. (Photo: Hannah McKay/Reuters)

Filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, whose latest work has got 13 Oscar noms, was making “increasingly dark movies” in the past “five to ten years”, and he wanted to change that before starting work on the concept of The Shape of Water, which released in India yesterday.

“I was in a difficult place over the past five to 10 years — you know, both professionally and in a lot of my personal relationships as well. That was showing in the movies I was making, and they were becoming increasingly dark,” says del Toro.

“I needed to change that, and wanted to work on a positive, happy story. That’s when I started writing the script for The Shape of Water,” says the filmmaker. It’s the story of a mute woman, a cleaner in a laboratory, who forms a strange but beautiful bond with a sea creature that’s being held captive in the lab. The film has been nominated, among other categories, for Best Picture and Best Director at the 90th Academy Awards.

Del Toro always wanted to explore a love story between two people “who maybe are not of the same species”. He says, “As a child, I was very excited after watching Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954). It was a love story between two characters [who weren’t of the same species], but the creature meets with a very violent end in that film. So I wanted to always explore that, and wondered what if it didn’t end badly for them.” The 53-year-old feels that his film is “perfect” for its time, because “we’re being divided right now in this world on the basis of so many things. The Shape of Water shows that we should love one another, despite our differences, and it’s possible for two people who are different to fall in love. It’s a life-affirming story.”

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First Published: Feb 20, 2018 12:03 IST