Guillermo del Toro

July 11, 2014 | 12:14 p.m.

‘The Strain': Guillermo del Toro addresses billboard controversy at premiere

"Pacific Rim" director Guillermo del Toro is photographed at Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank, Calif., on June 17, 2103. (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)
Several drivers and pedestrians have complained for weeks about billboards around Los Angeles promoting FX’s new horror drama “The Strain,” which feature a nasty-looking worm crawling out of an eyeball. Guillermo del Toro, the key creative force behind the series,  wants to know what the big deal is. “It’s just a … worm coming out of an eyeball,”  he said with mischievous glee as he hosted the premiere of “The Strain” Thursday at the Directors Guild of America. The Oscar-nominated director (“Pan’s Labyrinth”), who directed the pilot,  was obviously in an upbeat mood as he introduced the episode, which he hoped would terrify viewers. The billboards certainly have unnerved many who have passed by, prompting FX to remove some of them. At the premiere, John Landgraf, head of FX Networks, pointed to the image on the screen during his opening […]
June 27, 2014 | 11:47 a.m.

‘Pacific Rim 2′: Guillermo del Toro to direct sequel for 2017 release

It’s official: “Pacific Rim 2″ is a go. In the wake of director Guillermo del Toro’s comments earlier this month that he had begun working on a script alongside screenwriter Zak Penn (“The Avengers”), Universal has announced that it will be partnering with Legendary Pictures to release the film in 3-D on April 7, 2017. Del Toro will be directing the film and writing the script with Penn. In a video released Thursday from Toronto, where he is finishing up work on the gothic thriller “Crimson Peak,” which hits theaters next year, Del Toro announced that he and Penn, alongside the original “Pacific Rim” writer Travis Beacham, will be creating an animated “Pacific Rim” series as well. You can check it out below. “Pacific Rim” was a modest domestic box office success but was a surprising international hit. $309 million of […]
May 23, 2014 | 11:00 a.m.

‘The Strain': Del Toro and the new face of the apocalypse

On the set of the latest -- vampiriic -- drama of the apocalypse, "The Strain."
TORONTO — The forecast insisted that the latest in a series of punishing winter storms was due to descend on Toronto in a matter of hours, but the sky hovering over the cast and crew of FX’s new vampire series, “The Strain,” was nothing but a blanket of pristine blue. The sunlight might have cheered the locals who had endured more than one Polar Vortex event — yet it was dampening the spirits of the behind-the-scenes team attempting to film a vampire attack that was supposed to be taking place during an eclipse. On a clear and cold Friday, technicians attempted to create enough shade for the sequence by maneuvering a giant black tarpaulin at the entrance to a narrow alleyway, with mixed results. Miguel Gomez, the actor who plays the show’s streetwise Gus Elizalde, was gamely wrestling with an […]
March 25, 2014 | 11:53 a.m.

‘Ant-Man': Corey Stoll looks likely in cast, production begins in June

Corey Stoll photographed at the Los Angeles Times studio on June 12, 2013. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
It looks as if Corey Stoll could be the latest actor to join the cast of Marvel’s “Ant-Man.” The “House of Cards” actor is in negotiations to take on an unspecified role in the production, which will be helmed by Edgar Wright and is set to begin filming in June. The planned 2015 release will see Michael Douglas play the original Avengers member Hank Pym, a scientist who, in the comics, invents a shrinking serum that allows him to sneak around in miniature form and surprise foes. The film also will star Paul Rudd as reformed thief Scott Lang, the second superhero to take the name Ant-Man. Additionally, Patrick Wilson, who famously played Nite Owl in Zack Snyder’s 2009 adaptation of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ legendary graphic novel “Watchmen,” will have a featured role in the movie. It’s unclear […]
Oct. 25, 2013 | 11:40 a.m.

Guillermo del Toro opens his ‘Cabinet of Curiosities’ with new book

Guillermo Del Toro is photographed on June 17, 2103. Click through the gallery for a look at some milestones in his career. (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)
Over the last two decades, filmmaker Guillermo del Toro has become known as one of popular culture’s great visionaries. He’s channeled his wild, restless imagination to create dark worlds of fantasy and horror, crafting beautifully rendered stories that function as modern fairy tales. Del Toro is interested in innocence and evil, and his tales are populated with winged, multi-limbed creatures and human monsters. His new book, “Cabinet of Curiosities: My Notebooks, Collections, and Other Obsessions” (Harper Design, $60), details Del Toro’s creative process, examining the pages of the leather-bound journals he uses to jot down ideas and drawings, many of which have found their way into his signature films, including “Pan’s Labyrinth” and this summer’s robots-versus-aliens blockbuster, “Pacific Rim.” “Curiosities” also invites readers inside Bleak House, his Southern California sanctuary that’s home to a massive collection of pop culture artifacts, […]
Oct. 04, 2013 | 1:20 p.m.

Guillermo del Toro’s ‘Simpsons’ couch gag pays homage to horror

The Simpsons, Guillermo del Toro (featured image)
Guillermo del Toro’s couch gag for “The Simpsons: Treehouse of Horror XXIV” is nothing less than a love letter to the horror genre. Del Toro directed the show’s trademark opening sequence for this year’s Halloween special, and he pays homage to more horror franchises than we could count. Among the references in the opening, which runs just under three minutes, are tributes to Alfred Hitchcock, H. P. Lovecraft, Stephen King, Edgar Allan Poe and more. In addition to Cthulhu, Godzilla and a horde of zombies, Klaatu from “The Day the Earth Stood Still” and “Nosferatu’s” vampire Count Orlok make appearances. In one scene, Bart Simpson scrawls, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy,” the proverb made infamous in Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining.” Attentive viewers will spot the house from “Psycho,” the winged attackers from “The Birds,” Frankenstein and […]
Sept. 06, 2013 | 6:15 p.m.

Tom Hiddleston replaces Benedict Cumberbatch in Del Toro film

(Larry Busacca/Getty Images)
Tom Hiddleston seems to be the man of the hour. The actor, best known for his performance as the Marvel villain Loki, has been cast in Guillermo del Toro’s upcoming haunted house thriller “Crimson Peak,” Legendary Pictures announced Friday. Hiddleston replaces “Star Trek Into Darkness” actor Benedict Cumberbatch, who dropped out of the Del Toro project last month. “Crimson Peak,” set to begin filming in January, is a gothic horror tale about a young author (Mia Wasikowska) who discovers her new husband is not who he claims to be. Other cast members include “Zero Dark Thirty” actress Jessica Chastain, who starred in the Del Toro-produced “Mama” earlier this year, and Charlie Hunnam, who starred in Del Toro’s robots vs. kaiju epic “Pacific Rim” and was recently (and controversially) cast as the lead in “Fifty Shades of Grey.” “Crimson Peak” is […]
July 15, 2013 | 7:20 a.m.

‘True Blood’ actor Robert Kazinsky talks genre, ‘Pacific Rim’ role

Rob Kazinsky as Chuck Hansen in "Pacific Rim." (Kerry Hayes / Warner Bros.)
Actor Robert Kazinsky is, as they say, having a bit of a moment. The English thespian who appeared on the BBC soap “EastEnders” has been wooing Anna Paquin’s part-fairy telepath Sookie Stackhouse on HBO’s vampire saga “True Blood” this season, and he can currently be seen in Guillermo del Toro’s “Pacific Rim” as Chuck Hansen, the talented Jaeger pilot with an outsized ego who comes into conflict with heroic Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam). Even Kazinsky seems to be having a difficult time getting his head entirely around his good career fortune. In a recent phone interview, Kazinsky, calling from London, repeatedly marveled at finding himself working with Del Toro on a sci-fi project — he considers himself a “massive” fan of the genre. And that “True Blood” gig? That’s not so bad besides. HC: It’s been a great year for […]
July 14, 2013 | 3:42 p.m.

‘Pacific Rim': Del Toro on directing big-budget kaiju epic [video]

So, how was it for Guillermo del Toro to get behind the camera once more with “Pacific Rim” after a five-year gap since directing 2008’s “Hellboy II: The Golden Army”? “It was like riding a bicycle,” the writer-director said last week in an appearance at an advance screening of the film at the Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26 & IMAX in Long Beach, part of the Hero Complex Screening Series. “Except,” he added with a smile, “I seldom ride bicycles — but I remember when I did.” “Pacific Rim” is set in a near future in which a shifting of tectonic plates has unlocked the portal to another world. Kaiju — the name and the genre come from the strain of Japanese B-movie cinema sired by Toho’s original “Godzilla” — pour through the rift, and before long coastal cities have […]
July 14, 2013 | 11:03 a.m.

‘Pacific Rim’ message: ‘We’re all in the same robot,’ Del Toro says

“Pacific Rim,” the new film from director Guillermo del Toro, offers moviegoers plenty of crowd-pleasing spectacle with its visually stunning sequences of giant Jaegers battling alien kaiju in a near-future world. In an appearance last week at an advance screening of “Pacific Rim” at the Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26 & IMAX in Long Beach, part of the Hero Complex Screening Series, the filmmaker discussed his approach to designing the wild creations in the movie, which features an ensemble cast that includes Charlie Hunnam, Charlie Day, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi and Ron Perlman, among others. “Any time I want to design a monster, the last thing I want to reference is a monster,” Del Toro said, explaining that the creature designs grew out of the classic “man in a suit” tradition. “If I was making this movie in 1968, you could […]
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