With Guillermo del Toro currently in post-production on his next film The Shape of Water, his frequent collaborator Doug Jones has been chatting to Collider about the project, during which he revealed a few plot details for the fantasy adventure, which has been described as “an other-worldly story set against the backdrop of Cold War era America”.
“It’s a 1963 drama—it’s not a sci-fi [film], it’s not a genre film, but I am a creature in it,” said Jones. “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.”
“There’s a love story that brews out of it, and that would be the cleaning lady played by Sally Hawkins,” he continued. “She comes and finds me, has sympathy on me, and then that’s the story that you’re really gonna follow with this whole backdrop… It is artfully and beautifully [made]—if this doesn’t end up with Guillermo back at the Oscars, I will be surprised. I will be very surprised.”
The Shape of Water is expected to arrive later this year, and sees Jones joined in the cast by Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon, Richard Jenkins, Michael Stuhlbarg, Octavia Spencer and Nick Searcy.