Sally Hawkins and Doug Jones as Elisa Esposito and Amphibian Man, respectively, in the Guillermo del Toro directed fantasy adventure drama “The Shape of Water” (2017)

Directed by Guillermo del Toro, the fantasy adventure drama “The Shape of Water” is one of nine films to have been recognised by the Academy Awards with a nomination for Best Picture. With a script co-written by del Toro and Vanessa Taylor, the story the film revolves around was also penned by del Toro.

The story presented in this film, set in the 1960s, revolves around a janitor working at a top-secret research facility. The janitor, Elisa Esposito, is played by Sally Hawkins. The janitor finds herself forming an unusual relationship with an amphibious creature that is being held in captivity.


The Amphibian Man is played by Doug Jones.

With Jones having previously played Abe Sapien in “Hellboy” (2004),  Fauno / Pale Man in “Pan’s Labyrinth” (2006) and Scarecrow / The Trickster in “The Terror of Hallow’s Eve” (2017), the actor has developed a reputation for playing characters that require significant costume and makeup work done before he can begin acting.

With the films Jones has appeared in, it should come as little surprise to discover he currently plays Saru in the Bryan FullerAlex Kurtzman co-created “Star Trek: Discovery.”

del Toro

In addition to the Best Picture nomination, del Toro saw his directorial work recognised with a nomination for Best Director.

Even though del Toro was one of the lucky five directors to be recognised by the Academy Awards for their work, four of the directors which saw their productions make the Best Picture nominee list were less fortunate.

Not including Best Director and Best Picture awards, “The Shape of Water” is one of a few productions nominated for a further 11 Academy Awards. While the quality of the work done on del Toro’s film is unquestionably high, the same argument can be said for the Steven Spielberg directed biographical period drama “The Post.”

With “The Post” only picking up two nominations, there is something seriously rotten occurring with the 2018 Oscars.

Although Hawkins, Richard Jenkins and Octavia Spencer were all recognised for their work as Esposito, Giles and Zelda Fuller, respectively, it is noticeable there is no nominated actor that worked on this film in line for the Best Actor award. Rightfully so, each of the mentioned actors picked up nominations for their work in the following respective categories: Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress. With no fewer than 13 award nominations, maybe the Academy thought “The Shape of Water” was blessed enough to have representation in the categories it does.

It has been intimated the Gill-man played by Ricou Browning and Ben Chapman in the 1954 Jack Arnold directed horror film “Creature from the Black Lagoon” influenced the direction del Toro took when creating the creature seen in his film.

As of Wednesday, 31 Jan. 2018, no pocket change, “The Shape of Water” saw its global box office take hit $64.2 million. Despite the financial success, del Toro has not seen this success reflected in the awards the film had been nominated for.

In a few cases, inclusive of the AACTA International Awards, the Casting Society of America Awards, the Chicago Film Critics Association Awards, the Detroit Film Critics Society Awards and the Florida Film Critics Circle Awards, “The Shape of Water” picked up nominations but no actual wins. Despite this point, the film did garner the Best Director and or the Best Picture / Best Film Awards at the Alliance of Women Film Journalists Awards, the Austin Film Critics Association Awards and the Critics’ Choice Movie Awards.