You are here

Guillermo del Toro - Winner's Acceptance Speech, Director, EE British Academy Film Awards in 2018

18 February 2018

Winner's acceptance speech by Guillermo del Toro for The Shape of Water in the Director category.

GUILLERMO DEL TORO: Well, thank you. Thank you, BAFTA. Thank you, Fox Searchlight, for all the support and my per diem for yesterday. It's really useful for so much black pudding.

The shadow of English culture has loomed large in my life, giving me inspiration. Painters, writers, cinema. I made it no secret to say how important was the legacy of Powell and Pressburger in this movie, in making it. The delicate writing of classicists like Noel Coward, like Rattigan.

But also Sally, the miracle that is Sally Hawkins, and myself, who made it a point to study two of the greats: as director and as actor, Charlie Chaplin, and the magnificent minimalist Stan Laurel, who did so much with so little.

But the most important figure from English legacy is incredibly, for me, a teenager by the name of Mary Shelley, and she has remained a figure as important in my life as if she were family, and so many times when I want to give up, when I think about giving up, when people tell me that dreaming of the movies and the stories I dream are impossible, I think of her, because she picked up the plight of Caliban and she gave weight to the burden of Prometheus, and she gave voice to the voiceless and presence to the invisible, and she showed me that sometimes to talk about monsters, we need to fabricate monsters our own, and parables do that for us.

Thank you very much.