Pedro Almodóvar is one of the most internationally renowned Spanish filmmakers of all time. Over his decades-long career, he has directed 36 films, produced 21, and acted in 13 (according to imDb). Penelope Cruz, Antonio Banderas, Javier Bardem and Carmen Maura have all made appearances in his films, and Penelope’s performance in Volver earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress, making her the first Spanish woman to ever be nominated for that award.
His first films focused on the sexual and political liberties brought on by the death of Spanish head of state and dictator Francisco Franco, an era known as La Movida Madrileña. Along with his brother Agustín Almodóvar, Pedro founded film production company El Deseo in 1986. The studio has produced all of Pedro’s films since Law of Desire (La ley del deseo) in 1987.
“I owe Agustín the independence and liberty that I enjoy as a director,” Pedro said in an interview with The New Yorker. “It’s completely without precedent. Not even Scorsese himself has been able to do that.”
In 1988, the film Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios) garnered Pedro’s first Academy Award nomination. He went on to win an Academy Award for All About My Mother (Todo sobre mi madre) and Talk to Her (Hable con ella) for Best Foreign Language Film and Best Original Screenplay, respectively.
Pedro has won dozens of awards, including five British Academy Film Awards, six European Film Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, nine Goya Awards and four prizes at the Cannes Film Festival. He is also one of 25 personalities to receive a star on Madrid’s Walk of Fame.
The acclaimed director has also received the French Legion of Honour, the Gold Medal of Merit in the Fine Arts by the Spanish Ministry of Culture and an honourary European Film Academy Achievement in World Cinema Award. For his contribution to the arts, he was given honourary doctorates by both Harvard University and the University of Oxford. In 2017, he was president of the jury for the 2017 Cannes Film Festival.Tags: entertainment, film, LGBTQ+