Categories One-by-One: Make-up

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Hollywood Z
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Postby Hollywood Z » Fri Feb 25, 2011 7:45 am

Mister Tee wrote:(as when Ed Wood's one character beat out the more tradition Mary Shelley's Frankenstein...

Um, there was a little more make-up going on in Ed Wood than just the Martin Landau character. Each character had to be reshaped to resemble the actors from those movies, including Lisa Marie to have Vampira's over-the-top make-up, turning George "The Animal" Steele into Tor Johnson, Bill Murray into Bunny Breckenridge and don't forget the subtle work of Johnny Depp's "dentures" in the movie.

Also don't forget that Ed Wood's win here isn't so much a triumph over Mary Shelley's Frankenstein as it was a win over the Best Picture winner that year: Forrest Gump. Another thing that helped propel Ed Wood into the winner's circle was not only the support behind it, but the fact that it had three of the industry's leading make-up artists working on it: Rick Baker, Ve Neill & Yolanda Toussing, the latter two who won the previous year for Mrs. Doubtfire.

That being said, I don't see huge amounts of support for Barney's Version or The Way Back that would propel either two into a win here. While The Wolfman may not be a loved film, the demo reel they're shown may be enough to show off how much make-up was utilized for the film, which will propel it into a win.
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Postby criddic3 » Thu Feb 24, 2011 11:47 am

Big Magilla wrote:I guess my objection to the award is that it's a limiting one. It always goes to the most showy, elaborate stuff. Every movie employs makeup artists, as well as assitant directors, grips, camera operators and all sorts of otehr craftsmen. You can't reward everyone and you shouldn't try unless you want to turn the Oscars into as a big a joke as the Grammys.

When you think about it, though, it makes sense. The makeup you can see is going to impress you more than the makeup you can't see, just like the splashiest costumes are going to win more than plain-looking clothes. That may seem unfair, since both types serve their films' purposes, but it is a natural reaction. I think it's silly to talk about erasing the category in favor of lifetime achievment awards just because a Rick Baker can impress with elaborate makeup and win over more subtle offerings.
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Postby anonymous1980 » Thu Feb 24, 2011 9:10 am

OscarGuy wrote:They do. The award is for:

"Makeup is any change in the appearance of a performer’s face, hair, or body created by the application of cosmetics, three-dimensional materials, prosthetic appliances, or wigs and hairpieces, applied directly to the performer’s face or body. Makeup, as an achievement or a craft, shall be determined by the Makeup Artists and Hairstylists Branch Executive Committee."

Though, considering what they vote for all the time, the award should probably be called Best Prosthetics

The Emmys divide their Makeup categories into Hairstyling, Makeup - Prosthetic and Makeup-Nonprosthetic. (for both Single-Camera and Multicamera Series and Special respectively).

I doubt they'll do the same for the Oscars.

I'm predicting The Wolfman.

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Postby Big Magilla » Thu Feb 24, 2011 7:51 am

I guess my objection to the award is that it's a limiting one. It always goes to the most showy, elaborate stuff. Every movie employs makeup artists, as well as assitant directors, grips, camera operators and all sorts of otehr craftsmen. You can't reward everyone and you shouldn't try unless you want to turn the Oscars into as a big a joke as the Grammys.
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Postby OscarGuy » Thu Feb 24, 2011 7:08 am

They do. The award is for:

"Makeup is any change in the appearance of a performer’s face, hair, or body created by the application of cosmetics, three-dimensional materials, prosthetic appliances, or wigs and hairpieces, applied directly to the performer’s face or body. Makeup, as an achievement or a craft, shall be determined by the Makeup Artists and Hairstylists Branch Executive Committee."

Though, considering what they vote for all the time, the award should probably be called Best Prosthetics
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Postby Reza » Thu Feb 24, 2011 5:46 am

Big Magilla wrote:I really think this is a stupid category. Makeup artists should receive career achievement awards for their bodies of work. Period. Does Rick Baker really deserve to have twelve Oscar nominations and six wins and counting? It's preposterous.

The BAFTA's makeup award also covers hairstyles. Why doesn't the Academy incorporate hairstyles in their award as well?




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Postby criddic3 » Wed Feb 23, 2011 9:09 pm

Big Magilla wrote:I expect Wolfman to win because it has the most obvious makeup and because Rick Baker is beloved. Didn't they create this category for him?

I really think this is a stupid category. Makeup artists should receive career achievement awards for their bodies of work. Period. Does Rick Baker really deserve to have twelve Oscar nominations and six wins and counting? It's preposterous.

I think that's kind of unfair to the makeup artists. Why shouldn't there be a category competition for that field? I'm actually surprised they went so long without a category. Rick Baker has done some great work over the years, and if Walt Disney or John Williams or Meryl Streep keep doing great work why shouldn't they keep winning or being nominated? I do agree that The Wolfman is not his best work, but what was so great about the other nominees? He wasn't up for Planet of the Apes a few years ago, which many people expected. So I don't think it's just an excuse to give him another one (even if it is almost 30 years since he won his first -- and it would have been fun if this nomination came next year instead).
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Postby Damien » Wed Feb 23, 2011 7:08 pm

Mister Tee wrote:As I understand it, alot of "what happens to faces/bodies after long exposure to the elements". Certainly not what would normally win, but when the "most make-up" candidate is from an unpopular film, standards get altered (as when Ed Wood's one character beat out the more tradition Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, or Frida topped The Time Machine).

The difference is that Ed Wood and Frida had at least one other nomination (and in a "major" category) so they were films that voters would be drawn to more than Frankenstein or Time Machine. Still, even though I think it will win, The Wolfman's make-up is very standard.
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Postby Mister Tee » Wed Feb 23, 2011 5:14 pm

The Original BJ wrote:I wasn't all that impressed by the makeup work in The Wolfman. It seemed to me sort of chintzy -- very average monster movie makeup made to look sillier by the visual effects that aided in the "transformation" sequences.

This was part of my reasoning as well. They'd probably be willing to overlook the movie's less-than-good-ness or the underwhelming box-office if the effects were truly stellar. But I didn't find them so, at all.

You confirm my instinct about The Way Back as a film. People on other sites had been rooting for it as a type of movie we should all want to support, but my instinct from the start was that it was the sort of big, impersonal historic chronicle of which I was weary by the mid-60s. Who needs to revive old Oscar bait?

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Postby Big Magilla » Wed Feb 23, 2011 4:04 pm

I expect Wolfman to win because it has the most obvious makeup and because Rick Baker is beloved. Didn't they create this category for him?

I really think this is a stupid category. Makeup artists should receive career achievement awards for their bodies of work. Period. Does Rick Baker really deserve to have twelve Oscar nominations and six wins and counting? It's preposterous.
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Postby The Original BJ » Wed Feb 23, 2011 4:00 pm

I have seen all three nominees, so to chime in:

I wasn't all that impressed by the makeup work in The Wolfman. It seemed to me sort of chintzy -- very average monster movie makeup made to look sillier by the visual effects that aided in the "transformation" sequences. But it does have the obvious/lots of makeup factor going for it that I think the other films lack.

The aging makeup on Paul Giamatti was definitely effective, though I sort of have to admit that I think aging makeup is a little overvalued in this category. Sure, it can be done horribly, so I can appreciate it when it's well done, as it was with Barney's Version...but enough films age actors well enough these days that I can't say I thought the makeup work here was tremendously special.

If I had a vote, it would be firmly with The Way Back, for its consistently varied work on the faces and bodies of characters who face a gamut of weather conditions, from extreme cold to sweltering heat. The movie, though, is a snooze.

As far as what will win...I have no idea. I bet plenty of voters haven't seen ANY of these movies. The Wolfman certainly seems like the most typical choice (i.e. the one voters who haven't seen the movies might check off anyway), but it also seems like the most likely candidate for blackballing just because it's so bad. But, on the other hand, I don't know that there's really any enthusiasm for the other two movies either, the way there obviously was for Topsy-Turvy when it knocked off Austin Powers, the most-makeup/not serious candidate that year.

Also, I have no idea why the nominees aren't Alice in Wonderland, Black Swan, and True Grit. That would make sense as a set of nominees, right?




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Postby Mister Tee » Wed Feb 23, 2011 4:00 pm

As I understand it, alot of "what happens to faces/bodies after long exposure to the elements". Certainly not what would normally win, but when the "most make-up" candidate is from an unpopular film, standards get altered (as when Ed Wood's one character beat out the more tradition Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, or Frida topped The Time Machine).

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Postby Damien » Wed Feb 23, 2011 3:43 pm

I haven['t seen The Way Back. What does it make-up consis of?
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Postby Mister Tee » Wed Feb 23, 2011 2:30 pm

The nominees:

Barney's Version
The Way Back
The Wolf Man

I have little standing to lead an informed discussion, having only seen Netflix-available the Wolf Man. But, based on grosses, I'm in broad company. The number of non-critics who've seen all three may not reach four figures.

The make-up branch has shown a long-standing willingness to shade the results, leaving out contenders that would have likely win a general vote, from Interview with the Vampire to Sweeney Todd. This year, their omission was Alice in Wonderland, which, however iffy its popularity, was so make-up-dominated, it would have easily topped these three mokes.

It's hard to figure how voters will approach voting here. Going with Baker's Wolf Man work is literally returning to start, as he won the very first competitive make-up prize for a not-that-well-liked werewolf movie because the competition had been seen by hardly anyone. I guess alot of people will be going that way, but it feels like a lazy vote, and I'm not sure voters won't hold the film's lack of success against it. (Yeah, it did $60 million, but that's a flop next to Hollywood expectations, whereas Barney's Version, with so much less going for it, is a minor pleasant surprise in the $3-4 million range) Bad movies can win here, but they need to be backed by cold hard cash (see: The Grinch).

Really, you need a three-headed coin to determine this category (which is better than the four-headed one I need for best song). But my instinct is to say voters might skip Wolf Man the way they did Transformers and go for one of the others. My stab would be The Way Back, for its seriousness, and based on general Weir-respect.




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