Carlos Saura Atarés (born 4 January 1932) is a Spanish film director, photographer and writer. His name, with those of Luis Buñuel and Pedro Almodóvar, forms a triad of Spain’s most renowned filmmakers. He has a long and prolific career that spans over half a century. A great numbers of his films have won many international awards.
Saura began his career in 1955 making documentaries shorts. He quickly gained international prominence when his first feature-length film premiered at Cannes Film Festival in 1960. Although he started filming as a neorealist, Saura quickly switched to films encoded with metaphors and symbolisms in order to get around the Spanish censors. In 1966, he was thrust into the international spotlight when his film La Caza won the Silver Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival. In the following years, he forged an international reputation for his cinematic treatment of emotional and spiritual responses to repressive political conditions.
By the 1970s, Saura was the best known filmmaker working in Spain. His films employed complex narrative devices and were frequently controversial. He won Special Jury Awards for La Prima Angélica (1973) and Cría Cuervos (1975) in Cannes; and an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film nomination in 1979 for Mama Cumple 100 Años.
In the 1980s, Saura was in the spotlight for his Flamenco trilogy – Bodas de Sangre, Carmen and El Amor Brujo. He continued to appear in worldwide competitions earning numerous awards, and received another two Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film nominations, for Carmen (1983) and Tango (1998). His films are sophisticated expression of time and space fusing reality with fantasy, past with present and memory with hallucination. In the last two decades, Saura has concentrated on works uniting music, dance and images.