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10 Actors Before and After Movie Makeup

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While acting certainly demands significant physical abilities, the talent behind a star’s appearance doesn’t solely come from the actors and actresses themselves. Typically, there’s a team of exceptional hair and makeup artists responsible for creating the iconic looks of beloved characters. We’ve compiled a selection of the most dramatic movie makeup transformations to honor the art of movie makeup. By using wigs, prosthetics, and sometimes just a lot of eyeliner, these before-and-after pictures are truly remarkable to behold, even without the use of special effects.

1. Heath Ledger – The Joker (The Dark Night)

Heath Ledger’s portrayal in the film The Dark Knight was nothing short of unforgettable. He completely immersed himself in character, but sadly, he passed away shortly after the movie’s release. Nevertheless, the judges acknowledged his incredible achievement rightfully who awarded him a posthumous Oscar, a rare honor. It is universally acknowledged that Heath was a truly remarkable actor.

2. Daveigh Chase – Samara (The Ring)

Samara is a character that is hard to forget. She remains one of the most frightening characters ever to grace the big screen. Daveigh Chase, the actress who portrayed her, did an outstanding job. In fact, the scary demon from the movie “The Ring” became more famous than the actress herself. With such an impeccable costume and makeup, one cannot help but wonder if Chase was terrified by her own reflection when she looked in the mirror.

3. Naomi Grossman – Pepper (American Horror Story Series)

Undoubtedly, “American Horror Story” is one of the most widely viewed shows in the history of television. Naomi Grossman’s portrayal of the character “Pepper the Pinhead” was a significant factor in its success. The makeup artist did an outstanding job in transforming her into the character, leaving many fans in awe when they discovered that Grossman played Pepper. It was an incredible transformation from beauty to the beast; only a few people could have pulled it off as well as she did. She deserves all the credit she can get for this achievement.

4. Jacob Tremblay – Auggie (Wonder)

Jacob Tremblay’s genuine artistic talent was prominently displayed in the movie “Wonder.” In the film, Tremblay portrays Auggie, a real-life character with a craniofacial condition. Of course, playing a real person with a disability can be a challenging feat for any actor, let alone one as young as Tremblay. However, he and the makeup artist truly shone in their respective roles, stealing the show with their exceptional performance. It was an impressive collaboration, and Tremblay undoubtedly has a bright future ahead of him.

5. Richard Brake – The Knight King (Game of Thrones)

What we have here is a fantastic collaboration between the talented actor Richard Brake and an incredibly intricate and impressive makeup design. Despite its appearance, the makeup is not computer-generated, as evidenced by behind-the-scenes photos that demonstrate the skill and artistry of the makeup artist. With this makeup, the artist transformed Brake into one of the most iconic characters in the history of HBO. Of course, Brake’s exceptional acting skills also contributed significantly to the success of this character.

6. Glenn Close – Gutless (Hook)

Glenn Close co-starred with a group of high-profile actors in the movie Hook, playing the part of the pirate named Gutless. Her remarkable portrayal of the character impressed both audience members and judges, despite not receiving any awards for her performance. Interestingly, she was able to pull off the appearance of a male pirate convincingly.

7. John Rhys-Davies – Gimli (Lord of the Rings)

Lord of the Rings franchise accomplished a remarkable feat by securing four Academy Awards, which includes the category of hair and makeup. Among the notable transformations that took place, one of them was that of John Rhys-Davies, who played the role of Gimli, the hobbit. The alterations were so dramatic that it would be difficult to recognize John in his actual appearance without photographic evidence.

8. Gary Oldman – Mason Verger (Hannibal)

The mention of the movie Hannibal immediately brings to mind the brilliant performance of Anthony Hopkins, often overshadowing the contribution of Gary Oldman. However, Gary’s portrayal of the character Mason Verger, a severely disfigured pedophile, was exceptional. The art department had to put in a tremendous amount of effort to make Gary look convincingly disfigured, and their efforts were rightfully acknowledged by the judges with numerous awards.

9. Bill Skarsgård – Pennywise (It)

Bill Skarsgård’s natural talent for acting can be attributed to his family’s background in the same field. In the movie It, Bill’s portrayal of the character Pennywise lacked any physical resemblance to his actual appearance. It reportedly took several hours in the costume design room to transform Bill into the terrifying clown. He also underwent a rigorous daily routine for hair and makeup. However, the result was undoubtedly worth the effort.

10. Eddie Murphy – Saul (Coming to America)

From stand-up comedy to blockbuster hits, Eddie Murphy has showcased his versatility in various fields. His portrayal of the character Saul in the movie Coming to America is yet another remarkable achievement for Murphy. There are rumors that after the application of makeup and clothing, Eddie rode around on a golf cart from one studio department to another, introducing himself. However, no one recognized him due to his transformed appearance. It must be an enjoyable experience to work with such a fun-loving individual.

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