As of Saturday night in Los Angeles, Alfonso Cuarón can count a DGA award among the accolades piling up for his film Roma. Picking up the Best Feature Film prize, the director sealed the deal as the hottest candidate in the Best Director and Best Picture races at Oscar.

Speaking to Deadline backstage, he said the thing that had moved him the most about collecting the award in this circumstance was having it presented to him by his longtime collaborator and friend Guillermo del Toro.

“It’s just one of those things that are completely unreal,” he said, holding his award. “It’s one of those miracles of life. Your brother, not only in life, but also in film, is the one giving you the award.”

Recalling the Venice Film Festival, a previous momentous occasion when Del Toro had also been present as President of this year’s jury, Cuarón added, “It’s one of the things that’s touched me the most, and also because it’s the second time in this process. The first was Venice.”

Del Toro’s jury had awarded Cuarón the Golden Lion for Roma. But, to ensure the process remain fair, the two directors agreed to keep their distance. “We made an agreement not to talk for three weeks,” Cuarón said of their plan. “And I have to say, when I saw him and he gave me the Golden Lion, I just grabbed him, because finally for me, the quarantine was over.”

Cuarón had called out to his “cabron” on stage, telling del Toro, “You are my film career, you know.” Replied del Toro, “Yes, and catering.”

In a rousing speech, Cuarón first thanked his fellow nominees, and then reserved a special shoutout for his two Academy Award-nominated actresses. “Roma simply doesn’t exist without the generosity of spirt and effortless grace of Yalitza [Aparicio] and Marina [de Tavira],” he said. “They somehow, with the rest of my beautiful cast managed to bring to life this film from my memory.” He finally thanked, for their support and “glorious stupidity”, Participant Media, who financed the film, and Netflix, who are releasing it.