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"Mask"erading in the Movies

Aug 18, 2007
If you are directing a movie or a play, you have to think about the costumes you will use. In the ancient times, the symbol of two masks was used to denote Greek drama -- one joyful and the other sorrowful. Back in those days, the actors had to wear huge masks that amplified their voices. The ancient Greek audiences regularly watched characters as tall as seven feet thanks to their enormous masks and high shoes. After all, the characters had to be both visible and audible to the spectators.

Nowadays, thanks to developments in lighting, microphones, and video cameras, actors have it a lot easier. They can now literally dress for the part that they are playing. One may say that ultimately, the costumes do no more than dress up the movie. To combat that view, we have the old adage, "Clothes maketh the man." Clothes can also decide the fate of a movie. You might have a wonderful script with superb actors. However, if you happen to end up getting the look wrong, success will become somewhat uncertain. It is no wonder that stylists and costume designers are in such great demand in the media world of today. If you want an example of how the look of the actors can impact the success of a movie or TV show, Sex and the City is a great example.

As a result, the makers of the movie, Shakespeare in Love, invested much of their efforts in recreating the Elizabethan times through the historic costumes that they used. The crew of the movie actually won the Academy Award for Best Costumes for their efforts. Apart from this, Titanic, Moulin Rouge, and Chicago are examples of relatively recent movies that did a lot of research to get the look right.

As for masks, they are most visible only superhero movies. However, Spiderman was just one amongst many to hide his identity in a mask. Remember how Robin Williams pretended to be a woman in Mrs. Doubtfire? Nobody can forget that mask. More recently, we saw Gwyneth Paltrow don a similar mask in her portrayal of an overweight woman in the hit movie, Shallow Hal. If you love fantasies, the face of Harry Potter's arch enemy, Lord Voldemort is unforgettable. His mask is absolutely perfect for the character of "the one who is not to be named".

From the movies to costume parties, masks have become a permanent fixture. And movies such as The Man in the Iron Mask, and the Jim Carrey starrer, The Mask, have done much to add to its popularity.
About the Author
Masks can make the character. Find out about getting a silicone halloween mask or about professional halloween masks and silicone clown masks.
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