Local 706 - The Artisan

Winter 2022

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Page 54 of 79

W hen I got a call about the project, I was over the moon. The opportunity to work with Aaron Sorkin, Stuart M. Besser, and a great cast was a dream. The film is set in the '40s and '50s in Hollywood. For me, it is one of the best periods in terms of make-up, hair styles, and wardrobe. I always love to use elements of these periods on the movies I design. The elegance, beauty, sophistication of this period was out of this world. They had it all, pure glam. Being the Ricardos is telling us about the life of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz (both iconic characters). The story spans 12 years of their lives. We had to change the period and the age of our actors throughout the film. Although the facial features might not go through a massive change, the subtleties became even more important, along with the different styles and period in the film. To me, make-up helps to create this illusion of the time going forward and the characters' progression. The project was very creative and interesting for me. The big challenge was to recreate the complex make-up that was used on these iconic characters and to make them look real. I wanted peo- ple to look at them and remember these amazing actors' faces and looks. I think that it is important that the characters look cred- ible, so the public who come and see the film is transported to that period. There was also an obligation to create the images of real-life people whose persona is embedded in American culture. The opportunity to create different looks, following the styles of these years was very interesting … this challenged me to think and create and made me push myself further. Many hours of research were devoted to the film through books, watching documentaries, films, and videos, and all the original TV shows to try to find something that would work as a period make-up AND would look beautiful and credible right now. DP Jeff Cronenweth created two worlds: The real-life one and the TV show. One shot in color and the other in black- B Y A N A L O Z A N O D E P A R T M E N T H E A D M A K E - U P — MAKE-UP — of episodes and film footage. That was just the beginning. I met with costume designer Susan Lyall, and we went over her designs and sketches. I got a better feel of how our hair styles could complement and complete the desired look. After meeting with each actor and discussing ideas, I knew the direction I wanted to take the designs. By this time, I had my look book ready, completed my budgets, did a full script and character breakdown, and was now prepared to discuss our options with our director and producers. Working closely with everyone to transform the actors into their characters was such an artistic endeavor. Desi Arnaz/Ricky Ricardo, played by Javier Bardem meets Lucille Ball/Lucy Ricardo, played by Nicole Kidman in 1940 on the set of Too Many Girls, working with Ann Miller. We move through the Ricardos' personal and professional life into the 1950s and intertwined relationships with William Frawley/Fred Mertz, played by J.K. Simmons, and Vivian Vance/Ethel Mertz, played by Nina Arianda. Therefore, each principal actor had multiple wigs or pieces. Susan Corrado handled wig patterns in New York. Because of our international cast, we engaged wigmakers internationally: Peter Owen, London, England; Massimo Gattabrusi, Toscany, Italy; and Natasha Ladek, Los Angeles. I relied on Natasha for her expertise to navigate any challenges that occurred while shooting. We were given two weeks of prep and had a lot to do. Not only Continued on page 56 Continued on page 58 FILM STILLS BY GLENN WILSON/© AMAZON CONTENT SERVICES LLC Alia Shawkat, Nicole Kidman, and Nina Arianda THE ARTISAN WINTER 2022 • 55

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