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Roma, a black-and-white, Spanish-language film, is inspired by Cuaron’s own life growing up in early 1970s Mexico City. “Most of what I was doing was just to witness and enjoy the amazing Marina de Tavira and Yalitza Aparicio exist on the screen,” he said during his acceptance speech of the film’s two stars. “I am eternally grateful for the two of them. Also, another part of me is telling me that in reality, this film was directed by Libo, by my mother and my family, and maybe even more importantly, by this place, this very complex land, that shaped and created me.”
Liboria “Libo” Rodríguez is a domestic worker who had a profound role in raising Cuaron.
The Academy Award-winning filmmaker beat out fellow nominees Bradley Cooper for A Star Is Born, Peter Farrelly for Green Book, Spike Lee for BlacKkKlansman and Adam McKay for Vice.
This is his second best director win at the Golden Globes, following a 2014 trophy for Gravity.
Cuaron’s win is notable. The last director to win the honor with a film not nominated in either best picture category was 11 years ago. Julian Schnabel’s The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, like Roma, was not eligible for a best picture nod because it wasn’t in English, per HFPA rules. The rule is designed to prevent one film from winning both the foreign-language and best picture categories.
Roma instead was nominated for best foreign-language film and won earlier in the night. Cuaron was also nominated for best screenplay. When taking the stage, the Globes announcer incorrectly said he had won the screenplay category. That award went to Green Book.
“This film would not have been possible without the specific colors that made me who I am. Gracias, familia. Gracias, Mexico,” Cuaron said earlier when accepting the award for best foreign-language film.
Roma, currently available on Netflix, is one of the most critically lauded films of the year and is eligible for the Oscar best picture category. The film’s limited theatrical release was expanded in theaters following its Dec. 14 debut on the streamer.
Roma is one of several Netflix films to receive a limited theatrical release this awards season. The film’s ensemble includes lead actress Aparicio, a 24-year-old newcomer, and supporting actress de Tavira.
The 76th annual Golden Globes, hosted by Sandra Oh and Andy Samberg, aired live from the Beverly Hilton Hotel on NBC. Tune in after the telecast for The Hollywood Reporter and Twitter’s official live aftershow.
Dick Clark Productions, which produces the Golden Globes, is a division of Valence Media, which owns The Hollywood Reporter.
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