Guillermo del Toro has long made a name for himself for doing things that are weird and daring. Creatures, alternate worlds, ghosts, ghouls, giant robots—there’s always something strange happening in his films, and it sounds like his latest, The Shape of Water, will continue that trend.
Speaking to Collider, frequent del Toro collaborator Doug Jones (Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth) elaborated on the upcoming film, in which he once again stars. Up until now, all we’d heard is that it was “a mysterious and magical journey set against the backdrop of Cold War-era America circa 1963 with an otherworldly love story at the center of it.” But Jones explained much more:
It’s not a sci-fi [film], it’s not a genre film, but I am a creature in it. I’m a fish man that’s kind of a one-off. I’m an enigma, nobody knows where I came from; I’m the last of my species so I’m like a natural anomaly. And I’m being studied and tested in a U.S. government facility in 1963, so the Russian Cold War is on, the race for space is on, so there’s all that backdrop and that undercurrent. I’m being tested for how can they use me for advantages in military or space travel, or my technology—can we make this usable for humans? So they’re trying to keep me a secret from the Russians.
Well, that sounds awesome. As for the love story, apparently, it’s between Jones’ character and a cleaning lady in the facility, played by Sally Hawkins.
The Shape of Water, which also co-stars Octavia Spencer and Michael Shannon, will be out later this year.