Guillermo del Toro

Guillermo del Toro Gomez is a Mexican film director, producer, screenwriter, and author. He is best known for his Academy Award-winning fantasy films Pan's Labyrinth (2006) and The Shape of Water (2017), winning the Oscars for Best Director and Best Picture for the latter.

By Balthazar Malevolent

Guillermo del Toro

Guillermo del Toro Gomez is a Mexican film director of Spanish origin, screenwriter, producer and writer. He was nominated for an Oscar in 2007 for Pan's Labyrinth in the categories Best Original Screenplay and Best Foreign Language Film. Del Toro is a winner of two 2018 Academy Awards for Best Director and Best Film for The Shape of Water. Del Toro received the Nebula Award for the screenplay for Pan's Labyrinth.

Guillermo Del Toro was born on 9 October 1964 in Mexico. Trained at the Instituto de Ciencias, he was raised by his grandmother, an ultra-conservative Catholic. Del Toro became interested in film production when he was still a teenager. He later studied make-up and effects with Dick Smith, who created special effects for The Exorcist. Del Toro was a make-up artist for about 10 years, and in the early 1980s he set up his own special effects company, Necropia. At the same time, he was a producer and director of Mexican television programmes. Del Toro was also one of the founders of the Mexican Film Festival in Guadalajara. He lives in Los Angeles.

Del Toro achieved his first success by winning 9 awards from the Mexican Film Academy for his debut feature film Chronos (1993). Thanks largely to this success Del Toro made his first Hollywood film, Mimic (1997) and on his return to Mexico City he founded his own production company, Tequila Gang. His next film was The Devil's Backbone (2001), about the ghost of the Spanish Civil War. The film received positive reviews from critics and audiences. Del Toro returned to Hollywood again. In 2002 he directed the sequel Blade 2 starring Wesley Snipes.

In June 2009, Del Toro published The Strain in collaboration with Chuck Hogan, the acclaimed screenwriter and Dashiell Hammitt Award-winning author. The book raises the traditional Del Toro theme of the interaction between totalitarian regimes - in this case Nazism - and the dark side of the world. The theme of the child guide between worlds is also given a place in the novel.

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