When accepting his Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, director (Fernando Trueba) said: "I would like to believe in God in order to thank him for this prize, but I only believe in (Billy Wilder), so... Thank you, Mr. Wilder!". Wilder himself reportedly phoned Trueba a few days later for acknowledgment and told him: "Hello Fernando, I'm God".
Fernando Trueba shot the movie in Portugal for two main reasons: 1) he couldn't find any place similar to what he had in mind in Spain and 2) the use of that Portuguese location allowed him to empathize the tone of fable the story required.