Guillermo del Toro Gómez (Spanish: ; born October 9, 1964) is a Mexican filmmaker, author, actor, and former special effects makeup artist. He is best known for the Academy Award-winning fantasy films Pan's Labyrinth (2006) and The Shape of Water (2017), winning the Oscars for Best Director and Best Picture for the latter.
Throughout his career, del Toro has shifted between personal, lower-budget Spanish language films, such as Cronos (1993) and The Devil's Backbone (2001), and Hollywood tentpoles, including Mimic (1997), Blade II (2002), Hellboy (2004) and its sequel Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008), Pacific Rim (2013), and Crimson Peak (2015). As a producer and/or writer, he worked on The Orphanage (2007), Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (2010), The Hobbit film series (2012–14), Mama (2013), The Book of Life (2014), Pacific Rim: Uprising (2018), and Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (2019).
With Chuck Hogan, he co-authored The Strain trilogy of novels (2009–2011), later adapted into a comic-book series (2011–15) and a live-action television series (2014–17). With DreamWorks Animation, he created the Netflix animated series Trollhunters (2016–18), 3Below (2018–19), and Wizards (2020), the three installments of the Tales of Arcadia trilogy, based on the 2015 novel he co-wrote with Daniel Kraus. Also with DreamWorks, he executive produced Puss in Boots (2011), Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), Rise of the Guardians (2012), and Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016).
Del Toro's work has been characterized by a strong connection to fairy tales and horror, with an effort to infuse visual or poetic beauty in the grotesque. He has had a lifelong fascination with monsters, which he considers symbols of great power. He is also known for his use of insectile and religious imagery, the themes of Catholicism and celebrating imperfection, underworld and clockwork motifs, practical special effects, dominant amber lighting, and his frequent collaborations with actors Ron Perlman and Doug Jones. Del Toro is close friends with fellow Mexican filmmakers Alfonso Cuarón and Alejandro G. Iñárritu, and they are collectively known as "The Three Amigos of Cinema". He was included in Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2018 and he received a motion picture star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2019.