Make-Up Designer Ryk Fortuna who doubled on set as the boom operator, was the magician behind ‘The Man’s’ rugged charm.
Self taught making monster masks Ryk progressed in sculpting and lab work and at the age of 21 he developed a new prosthetic compound and makeup system which was first used on the Lord of the Rings films. After 7 years at Weta Workshop as a senior sculptor and make up technician he contributed heavily to productions like The Lord of the Rings, King Kong and District 9. After working in England on the Wolf Man he moved to LA where he has since worked on the Avengers, Superman and Snow White and the Huntsman. Most recently Ryk revisited NZ as a senior prosthetic make up artist on The Hobbit.
“After a brief chat with Mike on the phone I was hooked on his knowledge, enthusiasm and detail for the genre. The idea of these guys never washing or cleaning themselves made for some great scope for the break down of the makeup. I said ‘yes’ before I read the script! When I did my research on some other Western films I was quite shocked to find out that the dirty grime I expected to see wasn’t there. I took inspiration from the TV series Deadwood but knew we still needed more.
I’m normally used to working with prosthetic appliances to create character, so this kind of work was really exciting and a great challenge for me. Cohen is pale – as was most of our cast – so I had to figure out an attractive way of dirtying the cowboys. I wanted the skin to be leathery and grimy and also had to juggle special effects make up scenes with bullet shots and arrow wounds.
The whole cast and crew were amazing to work with – and in particular Mike was fantastic in allowing me the creative freedom to do some of my best work to date.”