Richard Ayoade’s ‘Submarine’ got Sally Hawkins her part in ‘The Shape Of Water’

Hawkins is up for Best Actress at the Oscars this weekend

Richard Ayoade‘s Submarine helped Sally Hawkins get her part in The Shape Of Water.

Hawkins plays Elisa, a cleaner in a high-security government laboratory in Baltimore, in the Oscars frontrunner. She is up for the Best Actress award at this weekend’s ceremony (March 4).

Director Guillermo del Toro has discussed how he came to cast the actor, saying her performance in Ayoade’s 2010 film was what convinced him. Hawkins played Jill Tate in the movie, mother of the 15-year-old protagonist Oliver (Craig Roberts).

Describing her role in Submarine as a “secondary character, del Toro told Little White Lies: “The way I cast actors is not through the way he or she delivers lines, it’s the way he or she listens to the lines being spoken by others, or by the way they look at another actor.”

He continued: “I just thought, this is it. If I create a great creature and she looks at it like a man in a rubber suit, the film dies. If she looks at it like a creature, it lives. She had such a massive crush on the creature – for real. Sally, not the character.”

Del Toro recently rejected claims his Oscar-nominated film plagiarised a Paul Zindel play. The estate of the Pulitzer winner has filed a lawsuit against the filmmaker, alleging he, Fox Searchlight, and associate producer Daniel Kraus copied elements of Zindel’s 1969 play Let Me Hear You Whisper.