Famed Latin American director Guillermo del Toro has made history by becoming the first Mexican filmmaker to win a Gold Lion for his latest work “The Shape of Water.”
The award was announced at the close of Venice Film Festival’s ten-day program where 21 international films competed for the prize.
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“I want to dedicate and give the prize to every young Mexican or Latin American filmmaker that is dreaming to do something in the fantastic genre as a fairytale as a parable and is faced with a lot of people saying it can’t be done. It can,” said Del Toro during his acceptance speech.
Mexican director Guillermo del Toro wins Gold Lion at Venice Film Festival for his film 'The Shape of Water'
The Shape of Water is set in the Cold-War era and combines the genres of fairytale, thriller, and romance.
The protagonist, Elisa, is a mute woman who cleans at a secret government laboratory where she discovers their top secret -- a South American scaled creature with whom she starts an unlikely friendship.
The film is due to be released by Fox Searchlight on December 8.
“I’ve been doing this for 25 years. You go up, you go down. You fly, you land, you crash. A career is an accident in slow motion. It’s not a trajectory you plan,” Del Toro said after the ceremony. “This is an airbag being deployed. What the festival is saying to me is, ‘we understand your voice in the context of film, and we’re inviting you to be a part of the conversation.”
The prestigious Venice festival is the oldest in the world and seen as an indicator of the strongest runners ahead of the main awards season.
This year many movies at the event explored the themes of climate change along with social divisions in the world.