Oscar winning actress Penelope Cruz and director Pedro Almodovar are “like lovers” despite the fact that the filmmaker is gay.

The actress and the director have collaborated on several films — most recently Broken Embraces — and know each other so well they are practically in a relationship, Femalefirst reported.

“There is something that works really well in our relationship that combines both our friendship and the professional side. We operate like lovers. So while we don’t have the pleasure of sex, we don’t have the complications of sex either. We work really well as a couple who don’t sleep together,” Almodovar said.

Cruz — who is currently dating Javier Bardem and is rumoured to be pregnant — also views her relationship with Almodovar as more than just a friendship.

“There is no one even close to him. I am always comparing everything to working with him,” the actress said.

The 35-year-old actress had even thanked the director in her Oscar speech this year.

Almodovar has previously spoken of his admiration for Cruz, revealing that she is the only woman who has sparked feelings in him.

“Out of all the actresses I have worked with, Penelope has been the one who has caused a sense of desire in me beyond the sensuality of a film shoot. She has caused me sexual desire,” the director said.