After Four Decades Making Monsters, Oscar-Winning Makeup Artist Rick Baker Is Retiring

The Annual Make-Up Artists And Hair Stylists Guild Awards - Red Carpet
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After over 40 years in the business, special effects and make-up artist Rick Baker is retiring. The seven-time Oscar winner — who’s worked on everything from An American Werewolf In London to Hellboy — announced his plans to hang up his proverbial hat on Wednesday.

According to SPCC, the 64-year old points to Hollywood’s preference for computer graphics over practical effects as part of his reason for leaving:

I like to do things right, and they wanted cheap and fast. That is not what I want to do, so I just decided it is basically time to get out. I would consider designing and consulting on something, but I don’t think I will have a huge working studio anymore.

Up until 2014, Baker’s Cinovation Studios employed a small crew of artists. It was at this 60,000 square-foot facility in Glendale, California where he created and stored all of his designs. With the lack of demand for practical effects in films, the building unfortunately closed up shop:

The building was great when I was doing ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’, or ‘Planet of the Apes’, but the industry has changed. Big make-up films don’t seem to exist anymore, and I was hoping that something would come along. I did ‘Men in Black 3’, which was good for that, but the last film I did was ‘Maleficent’ and I could’ve done that in a garage basically.

On Friday May 29, The Prop Store will be auctioning off more than 400 pieces from Rick Baker’s impressive career. Auction items include Daffy from Gremlins 2: The New Batch, Harry’s body suit from Harry and the Hendersons, and the Grinch’s santa costume from How The Grinch Stole Christmas.

(Via KPCC)