Penelope Cruz is "very interested" in people who live in "dark places".

The 37-year-old Spanish actress says she learned a lot when shooting 'Vicky Cristina Barcelona' - a love story about two women, an artist and his mentally ill ex-wife - and says she is now more understanding of people with emotional problems.

She said: "Looking back I learned a great deal from it. I feel even more compassionate for people who live in dark places in their head, or people that feel really trapped.

"It made me understand more how difficult it is to name somebody crazy. To categorise is so relative. I've always been very interested in that subject and this character is a lot about that."

Penelope won an Oscar for her role in the movie and though she is proud of the accolade, she still has no idea where to display it.

She added in an interview with Britain's OK! magazine: "I have it in my house in Spain. And I still haven't found the right place for it. For the first few months after I won, I was so excited about it that I took it everywhere with me. I even took it to the beach - I put it on a towel but it is very heavy and it doesn't float."