Happy birthday, Alejandro González Iñárritu!

Happy birthday to Alejandro González Iñárritu, who turns 53 today, on August 15. The Mexican film director, producer, screenwriter, composer is friends with fellow Mexican directors Guillermo del Toro and Alfonso Cuarón, and they are collectively known as ‘The Three Amigos of Cinema’. He was born in Mexico City and at the young age of 17, he traveled across the Atlantic Ocean on a cargo ship, them spending two years working his way across Europe and Africa. This experience has greatly influenced his films, which often have international settings.

So far, he has directed six feature films – Amores Perros (2000), 21 Grams (2003), Babel (2006) (these three films comprise the Death Trilogy), Biutiful (2010), Birdman (2014), The Revenant (2015); and they all have garnered critical acclaim and numerous accolades, including Academy Award nominations and even back-to-back wins for Alejandro!

Inarritu is very talented in many trades. He began his career as a DJ, later becoming the director at a rock radio station in Mexico. During that time, he composed several film scores, before becoming a filmmaker himself. He went on to direct numerous commercials, produce shows for Televisa in the ’90s, and also directed a few short films. He is more influenced by music than movies, he feels that music tells more stories than films, with more possibilities. He is a strange romantic – he fell in love with his wife the moment he heard her name. When he saw her, he decided that she was going to be his.

He has a reputation for making actors work really hard and attributes the greatness of his films to them. He sure brings out the best in them, since lots of actors who performed in his films owe him their Oscar Nominations – Naomi Watts, Benicio del Toro, Adriana Barraza, Rinko Kikuchi, Javier Bardem, Michael Keaton, Edward Norton, Emma Stone, Tom Hardy, and most notably, Leonardo DiCaprio.

He once said that his dad had a difficult relationship with success. His dad always told him, "If you have success, taste it and spit it out immediately. Because it’s poison." This probably explains how he comes up with one gem after the other.

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