Wednesday, August 5, 2009


By Steve Crum

Make-up! We all know, don’t we, that Boris Karloff had to sit still for four hours every production day as he was made up as Frankenstein’s creation in Frankenstein [1932]? And that Lon Chaney’s grotesque make-up in 1923’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame took 4-1/2 hours a day to apply? The suffering artiste, indeed.

ROD STEIGER [1925-2002], however, is the all-time, marathon, make-up champ. Steiger withstood 10 hours of torso tattooing [actually painting to resemble tattooing] for his 1969 starring role in The Illustrated Man. It took a separate full day to finish his hands, legs, and lower body. Warner Brothers make-up guru Gordon Bau and eight assistants were responsible.

At least that is the skinny.

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