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  • How 'Star Trek Beyond' Turned Idris Elba Into a Terrifying Alien
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    How 'Star Trek Beyond' Turned Idris Elba Into a Terrifying Alien

    If you’ve been freaked out by makeup in a blockbuster movie over the last 15 or so years, there’s a pretty good chance it was made by Joel Harlow. The Academy Award-winning makeup designer has created facial transformations for such films as the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, Alice in Wonderland, Mad Men, and the upcoming Marvel movie Black Panther. Harlow snagged Oscar gold for the 2009 Star Trek reboot but skipped out on the sequel to create the makeup designs for The Lone Ranger and Dark Shadows. He returned with a bang for 2016’s Star Trek Beyond, earning another Oscar nomination.

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  • 'Star Trek' news: Joel Harlow talks about special effects makeup used in the film
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    'Star Trek' news: Joel Harlow talks about special effects makeup used in the film

    In fantasy and sci-fi, filmmakers must bring their audience to the world they'd never known. What's helping them realize that goal is going beyond one's imagination. That's where special effects and makeup artists come forward, and Joel Harlow is a connoisseur of special makeup effects.

    In a recent interview with Deadline, Harlow shared extraordinary concepts that he uses when he's working with 56 kinds of aliens to complete the inter-universal enterprise of the 2016 blockbuster "Star Trek Beyond." He once won the Academy Award for Best Makeup and Hairstyling for his masterpiece in the 2009 "Star Trek" film, the 11th installment of the franchise.

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  • Contender – Makeup Artist Joel Harlow, Star Trek Beyond
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    Contender – Makeup Artist Joel Harlow, Star Trek Beyond

    For any below-the-line craftsperson, being nominated for an Academy Award represents the culmination of a career’s worth of relentless, diligent, pinnacle-level work. In Joel Harlow’s case, he has been nominated thrice: for 2008’s Star Trek feature film reboot, for which he won the Oscar, for 2014’s The Lone Ranger, and this year for Star Trek Beyond, the third film in the newly launched series of films based on the 1966-69 TV series. “It’s pretty incredible,” said Harlow from the Atlanta location of the new Black Panther film, “having been a fan of Star Trek the original series—and subsequent series and films—that I would be involved to the extent that I am to the point of being nominated for an Academy Award.” 

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  • Meet the Mad Scientists Responsible for Star Trek Beyond’s Oscar-Nominated Makeup
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    Meet the Mad Scientists Responsible for Star Trek Beyond’s Oscar-Nominated Makeup

    “You take all these images, and whether consciously or subconsciously, because you’ve seen things over the years, you just start melding them together,” said Harlow, who previously won an Oscar in 2010 for his makeup on the first rebooted Star Trek. “It was kind of a free-for-all in the beginning. I suggested we start creating alien designs, and everybody [on the in-house team] brought their love of Star Trek to it, and their own artistic sensibilities.”

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  • ‘Star Trek Beyond’ Makeup Artist Joel Harlow Discusses Designing Makeup For 56 Unique Alien Races
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    ‘Star Trek Beyond’ Makeup Artist Joel Harlow Discusses Designing Makeup For 56 Unique Alien Races

    A connoisseur of special makeup effects and an admitted Trekkie, makeup artist Joel Harlow signed on to return for Star Trek Beyond after working on the 2009 reboot, without any hesitation. Boasting a blockbuster resume of three decades, it’s in the Star Trek films specifically that Harlow finds “the opportunity for creativity.” Indeed, Harlow led a sprawling team in designing special makeup effects for 56 alien races represented in the film, all of which are rooted in natural inspirations.

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  • Interview: FYC Best Hair and Makeup – Joel Harlow on Creating 56 Alien Races for Star Trek: Beyond
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    Interview: FYC Best Hair and Makeup – Joel Harlow on Creating 56 Alien Races for Star Trek: Beyond

    Joel Harlow was first inspired by the makeup effects when he was a young boy watching the original King Kong. Captivated by the magic of animatronics, Harlow decided that was what he wanted to do, so he embarked on a career in stop-motion. John Carpenter’s The Thing also had an impact on him and inspired him to jump into makeup. In 2010 he won the Academy Award for Best Makeup on Star Trek, and this year Harlow received his second nomination for his work on Star Trek: Beyond. He’s gone from creating two alien tribes on the first Star Trek to 56 different alien races for the latest film. “There’s a little bit of Klingon in Krall.” Harlow says on creating the franchise’s latest villain.

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