Oscar-Winning Makeup Artist Rick Baker Announces Retirement, Says Industry Is All About "Cheap and Fast"
"The business is crazy right now. I like to do things right, and they wanted cheap and fast," Baker said in an interview.
Longtime special effects guru and makeup artist Rick Baker, whose work can be seen in Men in Black and How the Grinch Stole Christmas, announced his retirement Wednesday.
In a radio interview with KPCC, Baker explained his reasoning for retirement from the entertainment industry. "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."
The 64-year-old, whose career spans over 40 years, has won seven Oscars (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.
Baker said that the industry is now looking to save a dime on makeup work, opting for computer effects to take the place of human hands. "I could’ve done it in a garage basically," Baker commented on his work on Maleficent, which was rich with CG.
On May 29, more than 400 of Baker's pieces will be auctioned off by The Prop Store, including the Grinch's Santa costume and a Gremlin from Gremlin 2.
"I would consider designing and consulting on something, but I don't think I will have a huge working studio anymore," Baker told KPCC.