Roma, director Alfonso Curaon’s very personal film about a family in 1970s Mexico City that’s loosely based on his own, is one of the more acclaimed films of the year and considered a major contender for the Academy Awards. The film, which is currently streaming on Netflix after it received a brief theatrical release, features no major movie stars, is over two hours long, is in black and white, and is in Spanish (and other languages) with English subtitles.
Cuaron has said in past interviews that he will not ever release a color version of the film, and he has now reiterated that to Page Six, adding that there won’t ever be a dubbed-in-English version, either.
“They can request a color print but won’t get one. Nothing will be dubbed. I don’t believe in that. This is my vision. Subtitles — and that’s all,” the director said in the interview with gossip columnist Cindy Adams. This even applies, he said, to countries and territories that only show color films.
Roma, earlier this month, won Golden Globe awards for Best Director and Best Foreign Language Film, although it wasn’t nominated in either Best Picture category. Cuaron, who also directed the acclaimed films Gravity, Y Tu Mama Tambien, Children of Men, and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, is credited as the director, producer, writer, co-editor, and cinematographer for Roma. Roma also received Best Picture awards from numerous regional critics groups.
Cuaron’s declaration follows an episode in late December in which film critic Monica Castillo tweeted a screenshot of Roma, which she was watching with her mother. Due to something involving the lighting in the room, the shot from the first scene of the film appeared to be in color. Film blogger Jeffrey Wells replied to ask how Castillo was watching the film in color, at which point Castillo replied that she was, in fact, watching it in black-and-white on Netflix like everyone else, but Wells hung on to the notion that the image was in color, per his post on Hollywood Elsewhere.
Mom chose ROMA for tonight’s movie, so we’re finally watching it together. pic.twitter.com/R96nW7UJ30— Monica Castillo (@mcastimovies) December 26, 2018
The Academy Award nominations will be announced on the morning of January 22. In addition to Roma, the top contenders include Bradley Cooper’s A Star Is Born, Bryan Singer‘s Bohemian Rhapsody, Peter Farrelly’s Green Book, Barry Jenkins’ If Beale Street Could Talk, and others, as the race appears wide open. But Cuaron himself is expected to have a strong shot in several categories, including writing, editing, cinematography, and Best Foreign Language Film.