Behind the Hair of The Tempest
Turning a Shakespearean play into a motion picture is not exactly the easiest task. And though there were some unexpected appearances in The Tempest (hey, Russell Brand, where'd you come from?) we have to admit that while we may have yawned during our high school English class reading this play, we couldn't peel our eyes off the screen watching the previews for it. We got the scoop from Mandy Lyons of Sally Hershberger Downtown and department head for the film on how she created the looks on the set and what products the stars loved backstage.
What were the hair looks you were going for in the film?
The hair for each character was completely contemporary. It had to complement the modern costumes, which were really edgy, made up of lots of zips and leather. The hair was really rock n' roll with a punky, 80s feel. My inspiration for Helen Mirren's character came from an old photo I had of Vivienne Westwood in her early days. I cut and colored the hair of every actor in the movie and when I first met with Helen, she came to me with a long, sophisticated bob. To get her into character, I wanted it to almost look like she cut it herself. I made it short and choppy with slightly longer layers in the back (almost like a punky mullet). With Allan Cummings, I dyed his hair and beard black-blue and added a lot of texture for an 80s look. Felicity Jones had super long hair before we started so I cut it into a short, textured bob and bleached out her ends.
Is there any way to achieve these looks for modern day wear?
These looks are super easy to create by adding heaps of texture. All the characters in the movie were on an island so it had to look like the sea air had its way. To make it look really wind swept and almost clumpy, I used products such as texturizing spray and wax. Before styling your hair, make sure you wash it the day before so it is a little easier to work with. If your hair is too clean it will be harder to get texture. Use a texturizing spray in your roots and finish with a light wax on the ends.
What were your favorite backstage beauty secret weapons?
Did any of the stars have a favorite product they liked to use?
At the beginning of every shoot, I like to give the cast a great shampoo and conditioner so that I know they are looking after their hair between shoots. For The Tempest, I gave everyone Shu Uemera Art of Hair Full Shimmer Shampoo and Conditioner and everyone loved it - Helen Mirren Felicity Jones were especially fans.