Pedro Almodóvar

Known for his colorful and sexually charged films, Pedro Almodóvar was born Sept. 24, 1949, in Calzada de Calatrava, Spain. After years of poor religious training caused him to lose faith, Almodóvar moved to Madrid at age 16 with the goal of learning how to make movies.

Following several smaller works, writer-director Almodóvar broke through in Spain with Pepi, Luci, Bom (1980), which was soon followed by a series of domestic hits, including Dark Habits, Matador and What Have I Done to Deserve This? His first American success, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988), earned him his first Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language Film.

Almodóvar finally won that Oscar -- as well as the Best Director award at the Cannes Film Festival -- for All About My Mother (1999). He followed this up with a Best Original Screenplay Academy Award for the somber, atmospheric Talk to Her.