The Shape of Water on Sunday won best picture and best director honours at the Oscars.
Mexico-born Guillermo del Toro’s (pictured) film about a mute cleaning lady who falls in love with an imprisoned merman also won honours for production design and best original score.
Martin McDonagh’s dark crime comedy Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri fetched best actress award for Frances McDormand and best supporting actor award for Sam Rockwell.
Christopher Nolan’s World War II thriller Dunkirk got three awards, but in less known technical categories.
Del Toro, an immigrant, became emotional while receiving the Oscar. He dedicated the awards to the power of filmmaking that erases differences between people of various countries and cultures and to young filmmakers in every country in the world.
He told creative young minds they can make films using fantasy to tell stories about the things that are real in the world today.
For McDormand, it was the second top Oscar honour after winning it for another dark comedy crime Fargo 21 years ago.
In Three Billboards, McDormand plays a grieving mother determined to find the man responsible for the rape and murder of her daughter. In Fargo, she played a pregnant Minnesota police chief investigating roadside homicides.
While accepting the honour, McDormand stressed the need for inclusion in the industry.
Her co-star in Three Billboards Rockwell won best supporting actor for his performance as a racist cop.
Best actor award went to Gary Oldman for his role as late British prime minister, Winston Churchill, in Darkest Hour.
Allison Janney won best supporting actress for her role as mother of disgraced figure skater Tonya Harding in I, Tonya.
Best foreign language film went to Chile’s A Fantastic Woman starring transgender actress Daniela Vega. Jordan Peele won the best original screenplay award for his film debut Get Out.