Guillermo Del Toro took home the "pickled baby" from the 'Nightmare Alley' set.

The 57-year-old filmmaker likes to keep souvenirs from his work and amongst the mementos he took after filming wrapped on his latest movie, he "really needed" to have the grotesque tot in a jar, which is now on display in his house.

Asked what he'd taken after filming, he told “The tarot cards, yeah! But also Pete’s book and the pickled baby. And the lie detector. I bought Stanton’s radio myself, and I bought Stanton’s bag. But I really needed to leave with that baby. It’s in my living room now."

The acclaimed director insisted the look of his movies is one of the most important elements so he spends months on production design before filming begins.

He said: "There is a very private moment for me on every film where I start out working with just one designer. In this case, it was Guy Davis, who is one of my closest collaborators. We start out on what we call ‘the submarine’, which is a very intensive few months of doodling and designing, before we even hire the heads of departments to come in and make it all come to life.

"[It takes] probably about nine months, which is an enormous amount of time. But I believe fully that the most sacred space of my craft is the image and audio design.

"In the 30 years of my career I have always shot my movies the way I want them to look and feel, because in my opinion 80 per cent of a movie is experienced in a non-verbal way, whether you know it or not. The camera moves, the light, the colour… it’s not eye candy, it’s ‘eye protein’. Nothing is done just for decoration.”