Guillermo Del Toro Made a Blatant Weed Joke to the Press After Securing Oscar Win
That's what happens when a journalist at the Oscars asks a question that makes them sound really high.
Published on March 28, 2023

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Guillermo Del Toro appears to have made a weed joke upon nabbing his historic Oscar win for Best Animated Feature for Pinocchio. The Mexican director responded to a journalist’s question with either a jab at the reporter’s own cannabis tendencies — or by saying he thinks that Oscar himself is an economically-minded stoner. 

“The last time we were together you said that you feel a bit like Gepetto. Now that you’ve given life to Pinocchio, if you could give life to the Oscar, what do you think it would say to you?” asked a reporter of Del Toro in Spanish as the director clutched his latest honor, according to Spanish weed publication Cañamo.

“Wow,” began the director. “Marijuana is really cheap.”

Laughter rang out in the press room, and Del Toro quickly ventured to another answer having to do with Emilio Fernández Romo, aka Emilio “El Indio” Fernández, the Mexican director and actor who is credited as being the model for the Oscar statue’s iconic figure.

But the weed-minded among us were like, hold up!! Was the director insinuating that his Oscar statuette’s utmost priority is to purchase financially accessible reefer? Or — and we think that this is the more likely interpretation, so we’re going with it as our final answer — was he making fun of a member of the press corps’ stoner-sounding query?

Winning the award put Del Toro in a class by himself, making him the only person in the history of the Oscars to take home the honors for Best Movie, Best Director, and Best Animated Feature. It’s actually the seventh time that he has been awarded with an Oscar, having previously also taken home awards for Best International Feature Film and Best Original Screenplay.

More than a moment for hyping cheap weed, he used this year’s moment to hype animation as a tool for moviemaking.

“Animation is cinema, animation is not a genre, and animation is ready to be taken to the next step,” he said when accepting the award at the 95th Oscars ceremony. “Keep animation in the conversation.”

As reported by the Los Angeles Times, the director also used the moment to advocate for the avenues animation opens for less-monied filmmakers, particularly those in the world region from which he himself hails.

“You can say exactly what you want with [animation] without having to spend a fortune,” he said. “In that sense, Mexico and Latin America are in position to compete with the world world, using the force of the soul and artistic potential.”

After the laughter generated by the weed comment, Del Toro’s Q&A session took a turn for the uncomfortable when the moderator asked that reporters deliver their questions in English.

“¿Quiéres que te repita la respuesta en inglés? Porque puedo, qué diablos,” he said. (English translation: “Do you want me to repeat the answer in English for you? Because I can, what the hell.”)

He then went on to talk about animation’s import in Latin America.

Caitlin Donohue
Caitlin Donohue is a Bay Area-raised, Mexico City-based cannabis writer and author of She Represents: 44 Women Who Are Changing Politics and the World. Her weekly show Crónica on Radio Nopal explores Mexican marijuana culture and politics in the prohibition era. Follow Caitlin on IG @byrdwatch.
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