That day seems so long ago, well it actually was, 10 years ago to be exact. My friend Tracy and I had done a couple of music videos, photo shoots, and a shoot for a hair magazine (which is another post all together). Around that time we had dabbled in makeup enough to pull off certain jobs but we didn't have any experience in the Film Industry. So our game plan was to submit ourselves as PA's (Production Assistants), which is basically running around and doing any and every thing. Such as getting coffee, running errands inside and outside of production, the possibilities are endless with that title. We figured we could at least learn proper movie set etiquette and build up a rapport with Producers, Directors, and other Makeup Artists.
We submitted to any and every movie on Craigslist, Backstage West, and other internet film job sites. When we got a call from a producer, who wanted to meet with us we were so excited! So we made the drive from Santa Monica, CA to the valley (North Hollywood), at that time it seemed far because when you drive on the 405 it usually takes forever no matter where you go. We arrived at a house, (which isn't uncommon for Independent Movies) gave each other a prep talk, grabbed our resumes and knocked on the door.
As we're interviewing with the producer, he gives us the word that we have the job. We started asking him questions about production and what positions he still needed to fill and he tells us that he hasn't filled the Makeup Artist position yet. We looked at each other and then at him, and at the same time blurted out, "We're Makeup Artists, we can do it"! He then asks us can we do Special Effects Makeup, we were honest and told him that we've never done it before but we assured him that we could handle what he was asking for the film. He asked for a couple of days to think about it, so we agreed and left the house.
Tracy and I talked in the car and we knew we didn't want to leave the decision up to him solely on just our word of being able to do Special Effects Makeup. We drove down to the popular bookstore "Samuel French" on Sunset Boulevard and purchased, "The Complete Make-Up Artist" by Penny Delamar. This book had instructions on how to do cuts, bruises, wounds, everything. We picked up Tracy's younger sister and started applying all of these cuts and bruises on her, and gave her a bloody lip. We called the producer on the phone and asked him could we stop by again to show him some of our work, and he agreed. Little did he know we were bringing an actual person, who by the way received many looks in the car because she looked like a battered and bruised woman. We get to the producer's house, knock on the door, he opens it and we do this hand gesture like ta-da! Like look at what we did. He bursts out laughing because he couldn't believe that we were so motivated to do all of this on the same day that we had just met him. He gave us the job on the spot! It was the best feeling in the world, we walked out of his house calmly and got into the car and screamed our heads off. And then the phone rings, it's the producer and he says "I can hear you screaming in your car". We apologized, hung up and drove off and continued to have our celebration.