Albert Noobs, played by actress Glenn Close, struggles to survive in late 19th century Ireland, where women aren’t encouraged to be independent.
She poses as a man, so she can work as a butler in Dublin’s most posh hotel, then meets a handsome painter and looks to escape the lie she has been living.
Turning a woman to a man or vise versa is always tricky especially since the storyline is a full-fledged, period drama. Our minds are trained to find ridicule in such transformations.
Responsible for the subtle yet realistic makeup designs for Albert Noobs was Matthew Mungle, a special effects artist known for his work in 1992 for Dracula. He designed a prosthetic nose tip and nostrils made of PlatSil (platinum silicone) at a 100% deadener. This part of the nose doesn’t move too much so the harness of the silicone is perfect.
Gelatin prosthetic earlobes were also applied which extended to the outside of the ear for a wider and longer ear making them look more masculine. Ear plumpers were applied behind the ears to push them out, which gave a more endearing look.
Dental plumpers made onto a VacuForm of the actual teeth pushed the cheeks out slightly. She wore very light makeup, matching the prosthetics to her skin.
Hair was tied tightly to her head, matching the wig part to her real hair partition, a technique used by Martial Corneville, making it look real and giving it natural movement. Another technique Martial did was to dye the bottom inch of the actress’ hair to match the wig perfectly. These subtle techniques are note worthy for an incredibly natural effect.
Lynn Johnson, a local from Dublin, who applied the makeup everyday on location for her meticulous technique, was picked out personally by Mungle who could not be on location to shoot. It stood the test of outdoor lighting and an Oscar nomination.