The Craft of the Director: Guillermo del Toro

The Craft of the Director: Guillermo del Toro “Fables and Parables”

May 1, 2018 A DGA Latino Committee and Special Projects Committee Event

On May 1, DGA members gathered in the Guild’s Los Angeles Theater for the special event, The Craft of the Director: Guillermo del Toro “Fables and Parables.” Hosted jointly by the Guild’s Latino Committee and Special Projects Committee, the evening was the third in this series of conversations with master filmmakers that feature an in-depth discussion about the directing process, illustrated by clips from their work. The Craft of the Director event was inaugurated in 2015 with an evening with Christopher Nolan and continued in 2016 with an evening dedicated to David O. Russell.

After a VIP reception in the Atrium, the evening moved to the Theater where DGA President Thomas Schlamme welcomed the attendees to the event with the 2017 winner of the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film.

“We are all familiar with Guillermo del Toro’s body of work – his Spanish-language films Cronos, The Devil’s Backbone and the ethereal Pan’s Labyrinth; as well as his blockbuster Hellboy films and Pacific Rim, and his recent DGA and Oscar-winning masterpiece The Shape of Water,” said Schlamme. “This evening is a collaboration between the Special Projects Committee and Latino Committee. Together the committees have invited Guillermo to talk tonight about his directing process and provide insights on his approach to the craft.”

Schlamme then turned the podium over to DGA Latino Committee Co-Chair Regina Ainsworth, who spoke about the work of the Committee before welcoming del Toro to the stage. She was joined on-stage by Co-Chair Alejandro Treviño and committee member Javier Soto.

“The Latino Committee is thrilled to co-partner this discussion on fables and parables,” said Ainsworth speaking on behalf of her co-chairs. “Tonight, we get to do just that by recognizing the work of Guillermo del Toro, a person whose vision, leadership and directorial style has moved us all. His visionary monsters, examination of the other, and authentic storytelling style has had an indelible impact on cinema.”

In an in-depth conversation moderated by Special Projects Committee Chair Jeremy Kagan (SHOT) and illustrated by clips from del Toro's features Crimson Peak, The Devil’s Backbone, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, Pan’s Labyrinth and The Shape of Water, the master director reveals his insights on subjects such as script, camera, performance and editing.

Asked about about his love of the craft, del Toro said, “Movies are an audio-visual experience. Some of the most sacred, intimate moments we have with movies are moments that are not possible to put in words. If you don’t analyze and deconstruct them into audio-visual elements… A turn of an actor that is hit with the light, and the dolly pushes just so, and the music swells… It’s magic.”

Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, Guillermo del Toro studied at the Centro de Investigación y Estudios Cinematográficos, at the University of Guadalajara. His first feature, Cronos, debuted at the 1993 Cannes Film Festival and won the Mercedes-Benz Award as well as nine Ariel Awards (the Mexican equivalent of the Oscars). In addition to the previously mentioned features, del Toro’s filmography includes the features Mimic and Blade II, the pilot for the series The Strain, and episodes of the series Hora Marcada. For his most recent feature, The Shape of Water, del Toro won the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film and the film went on to garner four Academy Awards including Best Director and Best Motion Picture of the Year. He has been a DGA member since 1996.

About the DGA Latino Committee:

The Latino Committee was created as a networking group to advance career and job opportunities for Latino DGA members by improving craft skills, networking, and making Latinos better known to the Hollywood creative community. The Committee meets every other month and the current Co-Chairs are Directors Regina Ainsworth, Rami Rivera Frankl and Alejandro Treviño.

About the Special Projects Committee

Special Projects is the educational and cultural arm of the Directors Guild of America, providing its members opportunities for creative exchange to advance their craft and celebrate the achievements of directors and their teams.

< >
Log in as a Member to see upcoming events, screenings, and meetings.