New SIDE SHOW Revival Freak Sketches & Design Discussion
A vastly revised and rewritten new version of cult musical SIDE SHOW by Henry Krieger and Bill Russell is preparing for its debut under the direction of film director Bill Condon at the La Jolla Playhouse this month and character sketches of some of the new freaks being added to the carnival-themed show are now available to view, with comments on the process from the noted Hollywood make-up craftsmen who have helped create them, Dave and Lou Elsey.
The make-up men behind the film adaptation of LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS as well as ALIEN 3, HELLRAISER, THE WOLFMAN and more discuss Hollywood versus theatre in the new interview, with Lou Elsey sharing of their specific role in the production, "It's been a real challenge to produce something that essentially on a movie would've been a prosthetic makeup. Make it almost like a mask in a way, but still come across as being as sophisticated as a prosthetic makeup that the actor can move in and sing in and perform in and emote all of the emotions that he needs to. But these massive quick changes... it's challenging, but very exciting."
In discussing working with Bill Condon and his use of bringing Tod Browning's influence into the piece, Lou Elsey relates, "[G]etting the opportunity to work with Bill Condon as well was exciting. That combination for both of us was just like 'This could be really good, and really fun and something different.'"
Additionally, Dave Elsey adds of the process, "[W]e also didn't want to dumb down the designs that we were doing. We didn't want them to be compromised in any way, especially when we saw the costumes that were being made. They were so beautiful and amazing, it would've been a shame if suddenly the characters we were doing got broad. We sort of wanted them to be movie-quality creatures as far is as humanly possible in a play, so that's what we've been trying to achieve."
Furthermore, Dave Elsey adds of the congenial collaboration and how the show has improved since 1997, especially with these extensive new rewrites, "If anything, I think the show has gotten much richer in every possible way. I think what Bill's brought to it is amazing. He has a good eye for this sort of thing. He's keeping it kind of dark, but the characters are very appealing. Like in the film FREAKS, our freaks are very appealing, and that's what I like about it. I'm more on the side of the freaks and geeks and monsters usually. I just like that whole area. So it was wonderful to go down there, meet the actors, and the next minute they're wearing all of our stuff and they are those characters. If anything, I think there's more of that stuff in this show."
Check out the original article on the matter here.
Also, view BroadwayWorld's article covering recent comments on the new SIDE SHOW revival given by Bill Condon and Henry Krieger, available here.
View the new sketches and visualizations of The Geek and Reptile Man in SIDE SHOW below.
Photo Credit: AintItCool