The Pacific Rim director revealed the distressing family news last week (ends04Oct15) during a press conference to promote his new movie Crimson Peak.

He told reporters, "My wife’s cousin has been missing for a month. He just disappeared, there's no information, we don't know anything."

And del Toro admitted his frustration stems from the lack of active involvement by officials in his native Mexico.

"It's terrifying when something like this happens, of course," he tells Mexican publication Excelsior. "The biggest terror is that we have functionaries, politicians, and people that should be looking into finding an answer, and action, but no, they don't do anything."

The situation is all too familiar for the director, whose father was kidnapped 17 years ago - an event which has prompted del Toro to stay out of Mexico ever since.

"My personal problem is that I live in an involuntary exile since my father's kidnapping in 1998, because not everyone who participated got captured," he told reporters.

"Coming back to Mexico would make me vulnerable because I have a routine that is the same every day, and everything I do gets published; those people will know what time and when I’m getting picked up and where I’m going throughout the day. At the end of the kidnap (his father's) we didn’t say goodbye with a kiss. There were threats from them that stop me from coming back."