Guillermo del Toro Earns Three Academy Award Nominations for “The Shape of Water”

Guillermo del Toro is this year’s Oscar darling…

The nominees for the 90th Academy Awards were announced on Tuesday morning, with the 53-year-old Mexican filmmaker’s highly acclaimed fantasy love story The Shape of Water leading all nominees with 13 nods, including three nods for the man behind the movie.

Guillermo del Toro

del Toro, who was previously nominated for Pan’s Labyrinth, picked up three nominations of his own.

He’s nominated in the Best Picture category as one of the film’s producers, as well as Best Director for helming the film, and Best Original Screenplay for co-penning the script with Vanessa Taylor.

The Shape Of Water has been one of the frontrunners this awards season, and del Toro accepted the nominations with typical vigor.

“Thank You to the academy and my peers for this moment of joy in a 25 year journey as a storyteller,” tweeted del Toro.

Carlos Saldanha picked up his second career Oscar nomination, his first in a major category.

The 52-year-old Brazilian filmmaker, who was previously nominated in the Best Animated Short Film category for Gone Nutty, earned a nod in the Best Animated Feature category for helming Ferdinand.

Sebastián Lelio has picked up his first Oscar nod.

The 43-year-old Argentinian-born Chilean film director earned the nomination in the Best Foreign Language Film for his critically acclaimed film A Fantastic Woman, which is only the second film from Chile to earn a nod in Oscar history.

The Academy Awards — hosted by Jimmy Kimmel for the second time — will air live on ABC on March 4.

Here’s the complete list of nominees:

Best Picture
Call Me by Your Name
Darkest Hour
Dunkirk
Get Out
Lady Bird
Phantom Thread
The Post
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Director
Paul Thomas Anderson, Phantom Thread
Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water
Greta Gerwig, Lady Bird
Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk
Jordan Peele, Get Out

Best Actor
Timothée Chalamet — Call Me By Your Name
Daniel Day-Lewis — Phantom Thread
Daniel Kaluuya — Get Out
Gary Oldman — Darkest Hour
Denzel Washington — Roman J. Israel, Esq. 

Best Actress
Sally Hawkins — The Shape of Water
Frances McDormand — Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Margo Robbie — I, Tonya
Saoirse Ronan — Lady Bird
Meryl Streep – The Post

Best Supporting Actor
Willem Dafoe — The Florida Project
Woody Harrelson – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Richard Jenkins – The Shape of Water
Christopher Plummer- All the Money in the World
Sam Rockwell — Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Supporting Actress
Mary J. Blige – Mudbound
Allison Janney – I, Tonya
Lesley Manville – Phantom Thread
Laurie Metcalf – Lady Bird
Octavia Spencer – The Shape of Water 

Best Original Screenplay
The Big Sick (Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani)
Get Out (Jordan Peele)
Lady Bird (Greta Gerwig)
The Shape of Water (Guillermo del Toro and Vanessa Taylor)
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Martin McDonagh)

Best Adapted Screenplay
Call Me By Your Name (James Ivory)
The Disaster Artist (Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber)
Logan (Scott Frank, James Mangold, Michael Green)
Molly’s Game (Aaron Sorkin)
Mudbound (Virgil Williams and Dee Rees) 

Best Cinematography
Blade Runner 20149
Darkest Hour
Dunkirk
Mudbound
The Shape of Water 

Best Film Editing
Baby Driver
Dunkirk
I, Tonya
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Sound Mixing
Baby Driver (Julian Slater, Tim Cavagin & Mary H. Ellis)
Blade Runner 2049 (Ron Bartlett, Doug Hemphill & Mac Ruth)
Dunkirk (Mark Weingarten, Gregg Landaker & Gary A. Rizzo)
The Shape Of Water (Christian Cooke, Brad Zoern & Glenn Gauthier)
Star Wars: The Last Jedi (David Parker, Michael Semanick, Ren Klyce & Stuart Wilson)

Best Sound Editing
Baby Driver (Julian Slater)
Blade Runner 2049 (Mark Mangini & Theo Green)
Dunkirk (Richard King & Alex Gibson)
The Shape of Water (Nathan Robitaille & Nelson Ferreira)
Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Matthew Wood & Ren Klyce)

Best Original Score
Dunkirk (Hans Zimmer)
Phantom Thread (Jonny Greenwood)
Star Wars: The Last Jedi (John Williams)
The Shape of Water (Alexandre Desplat)
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Carter Burwell)

Best Original Song
“Mighty River” — Mudbound (Mary J. Blige, Raphael Saadiq and Taura Stinson)
“Mystery of Love” — Call Me By Your Name (Sufjan Stevens)
“Remember Me” — Coco (Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez)
“Stand Up for Something” — Marshall (Diane Warren and Lonnie R. Lynn)
“This is Me” — The Greatest Showman (Benj Pasek and Justin Paul)

Best Animated Feature
The Boss Baby
The Bread Winner
Coco
Ferdinand
Loving Vincent

Best Costume Design
Beauty and the Beast (Jacqueline Durran)
Darkest Hour (Jacqueline Durran)
Phantom Thread (Mark Bridges)
The Shape of Water (Luis Sequeria)
Victoria & Abdul (Consolata Boyle)

Best Visual Effects
Blade Runner 2049
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Kong: Skull Island
Star Wars: The Last Jedi
War for the Planet of the Apes

Best Animated Short Film
Dear Basketball
Garden Party
Negative Space
Lou
Revolting Rhymes

Best Documentary Feature
Abacus: Small Enough to Jail
Famous Places
Icarus
Last Men in Aleppo
Strong Island

Best Documentary Short
Edith + Eddie
Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405
Heroin(e)
Knife Skills
Traffic Stop

Best Foreign Language Film
A Fantastic Woman (Chile)
The Insult (Lebanon)
Loveless (Russia)
On Body and Soul (Hungary)
The Square (Sweden)

Best Production Design
Beauty and the Beast
Blade Runner 2049
Darkest Hour
Dunkirk
The Shape of Water

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Darkest Hour
Victoria & Abdul
Wonder

Best Live-Action Short Film
DeKalb Elementary
The Eleven O’Clock
My Nephew Emmett
The Silent Child
Watu Wote/All of Us

Carlos Saldanha Receives Variety’s Creative Impact in Animation Award

Carlos Saldanha is being heralded for his creative impact

The 52-year-old Brazilian director, producer and animator has been recognized with Variety’s Creative Impact in Animation award.

Carlos Saldanha

Saldanha has become one of the most successful tellers of animated stories of all time. His credits include Ice Age: The Meltdown, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, Rio and Rio 2, while he co-directed Ice Age and Robots. He’s Blue Sky Animation Studio’s secret weapon, having unleashed a string of worldwide blockbusters that have grossed more than $3 billion.

Saldanha even has Oscar cred with a nomimation for 2003’s animated short Gone Nutty, and an exclusive deal at Fox, where his BottleCap Productions calls home.

Growing up in Rio de Janeiro afforded Saldanha with a unique perspective of the world, and in particular, how it would come to shape his animation and filmmaking instincts and aesthetic.

“I was always a film buff,” Saldanha recalls. “Movies were always very special to me, but I never knew how to accomplish my goals. Blade Runner is my favorite film and I’ve seen it 20 times at least. I find it inspiring. So I went to college for computer science, but I was always very artistic. A friend showed me one of John Lasseter’s early CGI-animated shorts, and I was hooked, because this was how to bridge the elements together.”

The Ice Age franchise has cemented itself as one of the most popular in the medium, and Saldanha knows that he’s crossed over into something larger, capturing the imaginations of children (and adults) around the world, especially with the saber-toothed squirrel Scrat, which has become the official mascot of Blue Sky Studios.

“When you’re a part of something that becomes that big for so many people, especially children, you can’t help but feel proud. Scrat was something unique to the creative process, in that he wasn’t originally defined in the script. He was an organic character who took shape as a result of creative group think. So it’s very special that he’s become so embraced, and it felt very natural for Scrat to become an integral part of Blue Sky,” Saldanha says. “We all loved those little noises he makes!”

Saldanha’s relationship with fellow filmmaker and Blue Sky head Chris Wedge has been instrumental to his career. “Chris is a visionary and working with him has been a tremendous experience,” Saldanha says. “We’re interested in telling relatable stories in an exciting and fresh way, and Chris brings a great attitude to the creative process.”

Following up the huge success of 2002’s Ice Age would prove to be interesting for Saldanha, who helped to craft 2005’s Robots, calling it a “transitional film for me, moving out of the Ice Age’world, and getting involved in something new. And that’s what we love to do, we love building worlds within our films. And with Robots, we got to do something a bit unique with the characters and setting.”

The two Rio films clearly mean a lot to Saldanha, who says he was “thrilled to infuse my Brazilian heritage into the film, and it was a big goal for me to show the city of Rio de Janeiro in a very colorful and bright fashion. These were projects that were very close to me on a personal level, so to be able to craft them in the way that we did, it was a joyous experience. It was very important for worldwide audiences to embrace these films. I wanted to create a mood and tone with no boundaries and a free spirit approach to the storytelling. This was a true passion project.”

Saldanha’s newest project, the animated adventure Ferdinand, hits screens December 15. It’s based on the classic children’s book The Story of Ferdinand, about a Spanish bull that would rather stop and smell the roses than participate in bullish activities. John Cena voices the title character, with Kate McKinnon, Gina Rodriguez and Daveed Diggs among the other voice-over artists.

“We’re currently halfway through animation and it’s coming along fantastic. We’re so thrilled for people to see it as we’re having so much fun working on this particular story,” Saldanha says. He adds there will be a “wonderful musical component to the film,” as he’s again collaborating with favored film composer John Powell. “We really wanted to capture the richness of Spain, with vibrant and bold colors, so that the audience can really feel the atmosphere. And with John doing the score again for us, we’ll have something really special for the audience. We extended the original book but we retained what’s essential to the core story of a big bull with a really big heart.”

Saldanha was also asked to participate in the 2014 anthology film Rio, I Love You, with other celebrated filmmakers including Jose Padilha, Fernando Meirelles, Paolo Sorrentino and Guillermo Arriaga. “I had such a great time doing my short for Rio, I Love You,” Saldanha says. “I did it to test the waters, and I’m excited about tackling a live-action project in the future. I’m not sure what it’ll be exactly, but I love to challenge myself and keep things fresh. But I’ll never leave animation behind. That’s where my heart is.”

Saldanha’s “Rio 2” Breaks Animated Film Records in Brazil

Carlos Saldanha has plenty of reason to get animated…

The 49-year-old Brazilian animated film director’s latest project Rio 2, the sequel to 2011’s beloved film Rio, has made history in Brazil.

Carlos Saldanha

The film had the biggest opening ever for an animated film in the South American country.

The Blue Sky Studios project from Saldanha, who hails from the titular town, took off with $7.3 million to edge out the prior record-holder, Madagascar 3.

The film’s voice cast includes Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Leslie Mann, Bruno Mars, George Lopez, will.i.am, Rodrigo Santoro, Jake T. Austin, Bebel Gilberto, Andy Garcia, Rita Moreno, Kristin Chenowith, Natalie Morales and Janelle Monáe.

Rio 2 will be released in the United States on April 11.

Saldanha to Receive CinemaCon’s International Filmmaker of the Year Award

Carlos Saldanha will be getting plenty of love at this year’s CinemaCon

The 49-year-old Brazilian director of animated films will receive the international filmmaker of the year award at this year’s edition of CinemaCon, the annual gathering of theater owners in Las Vegas.

Carlos Saldanha

This year’s convention will take place March 24-27 at Caesars Palace.

Saldanha, an Academy Award nominated filmmaker who works with Blue Sky Studios, is currently wrapping production on Rio 2, his follow up to 20th Century Fox‘s animated hit Rio.

The sequel opens in theaters April 11 and features the return of voice leads Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, Jermaine Clement, Leslie Mann, George Lopez, will.i.am and Jamie Foxx.

New voice additions include Andy Garcia, Bruno Mars, Kristin Chenoweth and Rita Moreno.

The Rio franchise is from Fox Animation Studios and Blue Sky Studios.

Saldanha’s other credits include Ice Age, Ice Age: The Meltdown, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs and Robots.

Santoro to Star Opposite Will Smith in the Heist Film “Focus”

Rodrigo Santoro is about to share the screen opposite Will Smith

The 37-year-old Brazilian actor, who will next appear as Xerxes in 300: Rise of an Empire, will star opposite Will Smith in Focus.

Rodrigo Santoro

The Warner Bros. heist movie, which is being directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, follows a con man (Smith) who becomes romantically involved with a novice, being played by Margot Robbie. He’s then thrown off his game when the former flame shows up just as he’s staging an elaborate con in Buenos Aires.

Santoro will play the magnetic and powerful owner of an international auto racing team who is vying for Robbie’s affections. He also hires Smith to gain a competitive edge for his racing team.

The picture will begin shooting in October in New Orleans and Buenos Aires.

Santoro just wrapped the Western Jane Got a Gun with Natalie Portman and is currently in Brazil starring in Carlos Saldanha’s segment of Rio I Love You.  He’s also lending his voice for Saldanha’s animated film Rio 2, which opens May 14, 2014.

He was last seen in the indie feature Heleno, a black-and-white Portuguese-language film Santoro starred in and produced based on the life of one of Brazil’s greatest soccer players, Heleno de Freitas.

Warner Bros. is set to release Rise of an Empire, in which  reprises his role of the mad Persian monarch Xerxes, on March 7, 2014.

New Teaser Trailer Released for Bruno Mars’ “Rio 2”

He may hail from Hawaii, but Bruno Mars will be heading to a different paradise locale in the near future…

The 27-year-old part-Puerto Rican singer will be making his big screen debut, voicing a character in the highly anticipated sequel to the hit animated film Rio.

Rio 2

Rio 2, which saw its new teaser trailer released on the Yahoo! Movies site recently, centers on Blu, Jewel and their three kids living the perfect domesticated life in the magical city of Rio de Janeiro. When Jewel decides the kids need to learn to live like real birds, she insists the family venture into the Amazon. As Blu tries to fit in with his new neighbors, he worries he may lose Jewel and the kids to the call of the wild.

The new teaser clip isn’t so plot-revealing as it is entertaining, featuring a performance by a cute capybara named Clara. The little creature is featured delivering a rendition of “Memory” from the 1981 musical Cats in front of other characters until a surprise predator shows up.

The sequel is still supported by Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Leslie Mann and Jamie Foxx among others.

Along with Mars, newcomers in the cast ensemble include The X Factor season one finalist Rachel Crow, Andy Garcia and Kristin Chenoweth.

Original music by Janelle Monae, one of the voice cast members, will be featured in the film from director Carlos Saldanha.

Rio 2 is set for release on April 14, 2014 in the United States.

Saldanha Forms BottleCap Productions

There’s a new feather in Carlos Saldanha’s (bottle) cap…

The 44-year-old Brazilian animated film director, who co-helmed Ice Age and then directed two Ice Age sequels, as well as Robots and Rio, has formed BottleCap Productions.

Carlos Saldanha

The label is Fox-based, where Saldanha made an exclusive five-year deal with 20th Century Fox and Fox International to develop live-action and animated projects.

BottleCap Productions will percolate new projects while Saldanha wraps up his directing work on Rio 2,  which is slated for release next spring for Blue Sky Studios and Fox.

After serving as catalyst for the massively successful Ice Age and Rio franchises, Saldanha is one of the most important director relationships for Fox.

His most recent, Rio, grossed more than $500 million worldwide.