In Order to Become Pamela Anderson, Lily James Sat in the Makeup Chair for Hours

Anyone who’s ever tried their hand at contouring knows how much work it can take to change your face shape. So it comes as no surprise that Lily James‘ transformation into Pamela Anderson for the upcoming Hulu series Pam and Tommy took up to five hours to complete each morning.

The Magic of Movie Makeup

Barry Lee Moe, hair department head for the upcoming limited series, said that James’ look took “anywhere from three to five hours of hair and makeup every morning before we even started filming,” according to Variety. We’ve already seen some glimpses of the stunning transformation, which makes James unrecognizable as her former self.

Usually, when we think of those lengthy makeup sittings, we think of things like Robert Englund’s Freddy makeup for The Nightmare on Elm Street films or Ron Perlman donning horns and other major prosthetics for the Hellboy films. For comparison, both of those looks took about the same amount of time as James’ transformation into the buxom Baywatch blonde. While James doesn’t appear to be wearing any prosthetics, maybe part of that five hours is blending them perfectly.

Makeup magic managed to turn the cherubic James into the chiseled-jawed bombshell, contouring her jawline, cheekbones, nose, and more to give her the appearance of a dramatically different face. Where makeup couldn’t do the lifting, wigs apparently took over.

“We ended up using 25 wigs in the end. Everyone from Seth Rogen to Nick Offerman, Taylor Schilling all wore wigs because we transform them into new characters,” Moe said. “Sebastian [Stan] is the only one who doesn’t wear a wig.”

Taking on Pam and Tommy

The comedy series will take on the true story behind Anderson and Tommy Lee’s sex tape, which became the first-ever viral video when it was leaked in 1995. On top of James as Anderson and Stan as Lee, the series will also star Seth RogenNick OffermanTaylor Schilling, and Andrew Dice Clay. Rogen will play Rand Gauthier, the man who stole the tape out of Lee’s safe and sold it.

Neither Anderson nor Lee is involved with the series. It is being co-showrun by writers and executive producers Robert Siegel and DV DeVincentisCruella director Craig Gillespie will direct and executive produce.

Pam and Tommy was ordered to series in December of last year. According to Moe, it will hopefully arrive in early 2022.

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