"Antonio taught me about true passion and discipline," Dakota Johnson said of her stepdad at the Hollywood Film Awards

By Alex Cramer
November 04, 2019 03:35 PM

Dakota Johnson is lucky to have a stepdad like Antonio Banderas in her life.

The Fifty Shades Freed actress, 30, paid a moving tribute to the Pain and Glory star, 59, on Sunday while presenting him with a Hollywood Actor Award at the Hollywood Film Awards in Los Angeles.

Banderas was married to her mom, Melanie Griffith, for 20 years before the pair split in 2015.

“When I was six years old, my mother married a man who brought an unbelievably bright light and a whole new world of creativity and culture — and one remarkably magical little sister [Stella Banderas, 23] into our family,” Johnson said onstage.

“My stepfather Antonio Banderas burst into our lives. He was so vibrant and so fun and so funny, and his English was abstract. We found it absolutely amazing. He loved my mother and my siblings and I so fiercely, and so big and so loud that it would change all of our lives forever. Antonio taught me about true passion and discipline.”

Antonio Banderas and Dakota Johnson
Ben Trivett

Banderas not only remains close with Johnson — he also considers Griffith his “best friend” despite their divorce.

“Melanie is not my wife anymore, but I think she is my best friend,” the actor recently told PEOPLE. “I love her and will love her until the day I die. She’s my family.”

Banderas shares daughter Stella, with Griffith, 59, who he said has inherited her parents’ creativity.

Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffith in 2013.
Jemal Countess/Getty

“She’s a natural writer. She was reading books since she was very little and she loved to be behind the camera and all the attention,” Banderas told PEOPLE. “If you had a second life I would love to just step in there. Maybe my daughter is just my second life.”

The two-time Emmy nominee helped Griffith raise Johnson (who she had with her first husband Don Johnson) and son Alexander Bauer (who Griffith had with her second husband Steven Bauer).

“I was there because I love their mother and I am totally taken with their mother and they were the most important part of what she came with,” Banderas said to POPLE. “Very soon they understood that. They called me Paponio, a mixture between Papa and Antonio.”

Pain and Glory is now playing in theaters.