“One way or another, a face will be added to the hall…but we’re actually going to need way, way more than just one to make this scene look good, and we aren’t going to do it with computers, so….”
When your television show calls for a giant, underground collection of real human visages for use by a band of nameless assassins, somebody has to make them (with prosthetics, we mean—not with a scalpel). In this bonus Bloodworks edition of Scott Ian‘s visit to Belfast to meet with Game of Thrones‘ makeup designer Barrie Gower to learn the tricks of the Westeros trade, we get to see just how many faces were physically created for the House of Black and White.
Using about 50 life casts of various crew members (and at least one family member), Gower and his team made a whopping 570 faces for the hall, far more than the handful they expected to make as they had figured most of them would be CGI’ed. At the very least, he got a cool story out of it, as Gower’s own mom was used as a mold and ended up making it into a scene with Arya.
In this video Gower also explains how he and his staff do about 90% of the painting necessary for the characters directly on the molds themselves, to cut down on the time in the makeup chair for the actor or stuntman. That is different than how most American designers do it, he said, because they do most of the painting only after the prosthetics are applied. That seems helpful when you are bringing to life a world that has such distinct and difficult to create characters, like ice zombies, and men with a disease that turns them into living rocks.
Speaking of the stone men, Ian also got to learn what goes into a full-fledged Greyscale costume, and how it can help to base your fictional ailments on real life ones, but why you should avoid trying to copy them (real afflictions look fake, whereas fake ones have an authenticity to them because they aren’t trying to recreate something people already know and have seen).
There’s lots of other great nuggets in this bonus video, including watching Ian do what any of us would if we were given free reign to to play around in the show’s massive armory (sorry, they shoot this in the UK—armoury), and that’s start picking up each and every sword (Needle!) and seeing what it is like to wield it like a small child with an empty cardboard tube.
Make sure to check out the first two parts of Ian’s visit to the makeup realm responsible for bringing the Seven Kingdoms of George R.R. Martin to the screen, where he first got to learn how giants and the children of the forest come to life, and the second video where he went into the makeup chair himself to be turned into the first ever American White Walker.
What was the coolest thing you learned from Scott Ian’s visit to Game of Thrones? Swear your thoughts to the old gods and the new in our comments section below.