In the much-anticipated film “Les Miserables,” two of Hollywood’s most beautiful actors, Anne Hathaway and Hugh Jackman, are transformed into a disease-ridden prostitute and a hardened convict, respectively, and a new behind-the-scenes video shows how it was done.
“How do you make a beautiful woman not look beautiful? It’s kind of tricky, isn’t it,” makeup artist Lisa Westcott said in the featurette posted on YouTube last Friday.
Hathaway chose to chop off her own locks over the use of a wig or trick camera work.
“Annie Hathaway had the idea that she wanted to get her hair cut for real … which I was amazed at,” director Tom Hooper said in the video. “We tried to talk her out of it.”
To fully transform the actress into her prostitute character, Westcott painted over Hathaway’s teeth to make them look a “bloody mess.”
Explained Hathaway in the video: “A lot of people had to wear plastic molds over their teeth. I was one of the lucky ones. I was just able to paint my own teeth.”
Westcott also gave Hathaway very “crude” makeup to make it look as if it’s been caked on for a long time.
“It’s really very lumpy and bumpy,” Westcott said.
To turn Jackman into the “decrepit, tired and filthy” convict Jean Valjean, Westcott gave him a long beard extension and made it appear as if his hair had been hacked off by his jailors.
Additionally, Jackman wore contact lenses to make his eyes appear red and sore, and a specially made mouth mold to make his teeth appear rotten.
Westcott also detailed how Sacha Baron Cohen’s “fancied” a gold tooth as the corrupt innkeeper Monsieur Thénardier, and how she dipped his on-screen wife Helena Bonham Carter’s blond wig in tea and coffee to give it some “brassiness.”
“The two of them together both look divine,” Westcott said.