Guardians of the Galaxy 3 sets a world record for……..

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When it comes to special makeup, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” broke the world record for the most makeup appliances created for a single production. (The previous record holder was the live-action “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”). “There are more practical applications in this movie than any movie in the history of cinema,” says Gunn, “and that’s a lot. We had hundreds of what we call humanimals that are on Counter-Earth to create.”

Gunn didn’t think that “just putting a bunch of CGI heads on five hundred extras would’ve worked very well for the humanimals.” He felt that they needed to do practical, even though there would be CGI elements in some of them, like adding the blinks of the eyes.

When it came to creating the special makeup Gunn wanted for the humanimals, makeup department head Alexei Dmitriew and Legacy Effects were instrumental. “We had a huge makeup team, headed up by Alexei Dmitriew and Legacy Effects,” explains Gunn. “To create all of these characters, we divided them into A’s, B’s and C’s. So, A’s were the fully done makeups that were in the front that were going to be featured. B’s were a little bit further back that you might see glimpses of, but we’re not going to do close-ups of them necessarily, and then the C’s were more simple masks that people could pull on. We could put them way in the background. All those different humanimal makeups had to be very carefully planned out.” Dmitriew found “it was really excting” to do all the humanimals practical. “We had a number of prosthetics that almost equalled the rest of the movie,” he says. “That’s how big the humanimal work was. So, those humanimals days were absolutely huge.

Our background tent was gigantic, and we had all of our trailers packed. There were teeth, contacts, hands, hooved hands and all that stuff for all, so it was a big undertaking. Legacy Effects made amazing pieces. All the beautiful hair work with custom hair pieces for all of them, and more. There were just so many different looks, and they were all practical. It was really cool.” One example that Dmitriew was happy to share was a humanimal that was a cassowary bird resembling a blue jay. “The postal worker blue jays were really cool,” he says. “They turned out amazing. They have a lot of 3D printed elements with magnets and a beak and a whole locking jaw. So, the actor gets to drive the movement of the whole beak. They were tricky makeups to make look right.”

Dmitriew has nothing but praise for his Legacy Effects collaborators. “Their shop is amazing and their artists there are amazing,” he says. “They’re just at the forefront of that technology and 3D printing. They never get stale. They never get complacent with what they’re doing. They’re always pushing the envelope and trying to improve.”

related feature: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 review

related feature: James Gunn & cast introduce the Guardian of the Galaxy 2 UK premiere

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