Shortly after taking home the Best Director and Best Picture Oscars for his film The Shape of Water last Sunday, Mexican director Guillermo del Toro announces he divorced his wife of three decades Lorenza Newton last year, but had kept the news private. Del Toro revealed the news to Mexican magazine Reforma: “I separated in February and divorced in September,” he told the publication, “but few people knew.”
After he walked the red carpet with scriptwriter Kim Morgan, who laced her arm through his, some wondered why his wife and the mother of his two daughters Marisa and Mariana wasn’t by his side at the awards show. The 53-year-old filmmaker addressed the questions swirling around his marital status when he disclosed his divorce news to Reforma on Mar. 7.
In his Oscars acceptance speech, del Toro thanked Morgan, who is a screenwriter on his upcoming movie Nightmare Alley. The director spoke to the Mexican magazine about his coworker and “plus one” at Hollywood’s biggest night, saying the two were good friends and that she wasn’t a factor in his divorce. “She is working with me, we have a nice friendship. In case some news appear, let’s clarify that I separated in February. I started working with her at the end of the summer.” He refrained from go into detail about the cause of his divorce.
After presenter Emma Stone announced that del Toro won the Best Director Oscar, he hugged Morgan and received a standing ovation. “I want to thank the people that have come with me all the way. Kimmy,” he said in his acceptance speech, mentioning Morgan and other collaborators, as well as his family. “And my kids.” He capped his speech with a James Cagney line from the 1942 movie Yankee Doodle Dandy: “My mother thanks you, my father thanks you, my brothers and sisters thank you, and I thank you!”
In January, del Toro skipped the Screen Actors Guild Awards to spend time with his father, who was ill. “My father has stabilized. Thank you all for your kindness,” he later tweeted. After the Oscars ceremony on Mar. 4, he said he would take the golden trophies home to his parents in Mexico. “My next stop is I’m going to see my mom and my dad this week. I’m going back home with these two babies.”