June 5, 2015 0

Makeup artist Rick Baker’s film props auctioned for $1M

By in GEFilms


Before Avatar and performance-capture technology, Hollywood relied on a different kind of artist to bring magic to the big screen: the makeup artist. One of the most well-known and renowned makeup artists of our time is Rick Baker, who pioneered the field with his work on An American Werewolf in London and continues to work wonders to this day on films like Men in Black 3 and Maleficent.

prop_store_auctionRick Baker retired recently, explaining on a radio interview with KPCC his reasoning for leaving entertainment industry. Baker said that the industry is now looking to save money on makeup work, opting for computer effects to take the place of human hands.

“I said the time is right, I am 64 years old, and the business is crazy right now. I like to do things right, and they wanted cheap and fast,” Baker said. “That is not what I want to do, so I just decided it is basically time to get out.”

Some others believe that the art of special effects is not dead. Mad Max: Fury Road and AMC’s The Walking Dead prove that the art form lives on, though maybe not as strongly as it once did.

RickBaker_auction copy

Last 29th of May, Rick Baker’s props from his decades-long career scored over $1 million.

The auction featured more than 400 works of cinematic art from more than 50 film, television and video projects that Baker designed in his 40-plus year career.

Props from Men in Black, Mighty Joe Young, Harry and the Henderson’s, Michael Jackson: Moonwalker, Planet of the Apes, How the Grinch Stole Christmas and numerous other films fetched a grand total of $1,069,085 (more than half sold in pre-sale).

Men In Black‘s Mikey (John Alexander) costume display sold for $39,975, and Mighty Joe Young‘s full-size Big Joe head skin, chest, arms and hands, which expected to bring in $3,000-$4,000, sold for $33,000. Harry and the Hendersons‘ Harry (Kevin Peter Hall) insert head with controls sold for $17,222, and Michael Jackson’s body lifecast and molds from Michael Jackson: Moonwalker sold for $11,000.


The 64-year-old, whose career spans over four decades, has won seven Oscars (he’s been nominated for 12) for his makeup skills, scoring the golden statue for An American Werewolf in London, Harry and the Hendersons, Ed Wood, The Nutty Professor, Men in Black, How the Grinch Stole Christmas and The Wolfman.

Tags: , , , ,

Leave a Reply