Past, present and future stars of the movie makeup industry gathered at the Cinema Makeup School’s Hollywood campus Sunday to celebrate 20 years of teaching young artists the makeup and effects trades. Industry veterans, including Academy governor Leonard Engelman and makeup artist Michael Westmore (Star Trek), came out to support the school and watch Oscar winner and CMS instructor Joel Harlow (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) transform fellow makeup artist Ron Pipes (Mad Men) into a whimsical fish-man creature inspired by the work of classic horror writer H.P. Lovecraft.
The gathering also marked the opening of the school’s new Jack Pierce Memorial Gallery. Named in honor of Jack Pierce, the godfather of monster makeup, the new gallery was conceived as a permanent display space to honor makeup and effects for film and television. Its inaugural exhibit features pieces by Engelman and Harlow as well as works by special effects artists Steve Wang (Predator), Jim Kagel (Spider-Man), Brent Armstrong (Starship Troopers) and Todd Rex (Star Trek Into Darkness) and companies MastersFX (True Blood) and Amalgamated Dynamics (AVP: Alien vs. Predator).
“It was awesome seeing Michael Westmore there. The fact that he showed up was just amazing,” said CMS alumni Nestor Castañeda.
CMS chief academic officer Michael Spatola, who is also a noted effects artist from projects such as current blockbuster Iron Man 3, served as master of ceremonies during the demonstration.
“Everyone seemed so enthusiastic,” said Spatola. “They wanted to know how everything was done, how it was painted… I was thrilled with the audience participation.”
When Harlow finished the application, guests were invited to join in on the photo session.