As a filmmaker, director Guillermo del Toro has made a career out of delivering tales of the marginalized and fantastical. His imaginative, otherworldly sensibilities have not only allowed his films to gain appreciation on a critical level, but they’ve also attracted dedicated legions of fans, loyal to his often macabre style.
While many of the director’s supporters have been disappointed with what feels like an overall lack of progress on films like Hellboy 3 and Pacific Rim 2, del Toro has consistently proven himself an ever-evolving creative force over the years, not confined to one subject – or even medium, for that matter.
Between bringing his children’s novel series Trollhunters to life as an animated Netflix original TV show and working on a Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark movie adaptation in recent months, one would think del Toro has his hands full. But according to The Tracking Board, the Pan’s Labyrinth maestro is currently writing a new film for Fox Searchlight, which he will also produce and direct, called The Shape of Water.
From the sound of it, del Toro’s latest work will see the director again merging the fantastical into the historical, as he did with The Devil’s Backbone, Pan’s Labyrinth, and Crimson Peak. The story follows Elisa, played by Sally Hawkins (Godzilla) a mute young woman who works as a janitor at a laboratory in 1963, during the height of the Cold War. When Elisa falls in love with the amphibious man who is being held at the lab, she enlists the help of her neighbour to help her set the man free. Once freed however, Elisa begins to learn that life outside the lab might be even more dangerous for her lover than she’d expected. At present time, Richard Jenkins (Spotlight), Octavia Spencer (Zootopia) and Michael Stuhlbarg (Steve Jobs) are all in talks to star in the production.
Judged from a creative perspective, the plot of The Shape of Water seems to underscore del Toro’s strengths as a storyteller. With the fairy tale/historical element in place, he’s able to tread vaguely familiar ground while still remaining entirely original. Having already dabbled in the concept of amphibious characters with Hellboy’s Abe Sapien could also better inform Del Toro’s ability to bring such a being to life in a real world setting. What’s more, if the aforementioned actors currently in talks do sign on, the film will have secured itself a multi-talented cast with strong dramatic backgrounds.
Though this is only our first taste of what The Shape of Water could be like, del Toro’s wide-ranging skills as a filmmaker can always be counted on to provide fans with something new. The director’s roster of upcoming projects never seems to stop growing and one can’t help but feel that when it comes to Guillermo del Toro, there’s always something magical on its way.
Screen Rant will keep you up to date on The Shape of Water news as it comes our way.
Source: The Tracking Board