As Evil Dead Rise hits cinemas today (21st April), we caught up with Luke Polti, make-up FX and prosthetics designer, who was tasked with creating the look for Ellie (Alyssa Sutherland) when she becomes possessed by the parasitic demons known as Deadites.


"Initially, we started with large prosthetics, but then we wanted to see how much we could pare back and still keep this horrific, quite scary and intense look," he said.

"I love big make-up, but in this case, we were trying to go quite minimal but pack a punch. We had little silicone prosthetics to accentuate parts of her face and a few adhesive transfers that we would add to as she got more beaten up in the film."

He added: "The main thing was making sure we didn't lose Alyssa and her performance. I'm a big Evil Dead fan and we did reference some of the old '80s films – we wanted it to feel familiar, but not exactly the same.

"It was a pretty full-on paint job. Veins were hand-painted on every day. A lot of it is paint, and then texturing the blood.

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"The beauty of silicone is it's got a level of translucency, so it responds to light very well, not like back in the day when it was foam latex that was just white and you had to heavily paint it. If you overly paint stuff, it can become quite heavy and sort of flat."

Evil Dead Rise
Alyssa Sutherland as Ellie in Evil Dead Rise. StudioCanal

Every day, new prosthetics were required. "Once you've cleaned it off, there's glue on the back of it, so you wouldn't want to use it again," Polti said, but added: "Alyssa's got some bits and bobs that we glued on a board for her of her make-up."

Sutherland’s make-up took four-and-a-half hours in the make-up chair each day. Polti used alcohol paints, which dry nicely, as well as cream make-up and oils, which respond better to areas of the face, and powder palettes, which are less aggressive on the skin.

For sweat, sometimes glycerine and oils are used, but once it hits the make-up, it starts to dissolve it and ruin it, Polti explained. "Before each take, we'd mist water on the cast to make their skin glisten and give the effect of sweat, and wet their hair for a scary drizzle look."

Evil Dead Rise does not skimp on the gore – more than 6,500 litres of fake blood were used during the making of the movie. With a typical human body containing only about five litres of blood, that's the equivalent of 1,300 people...

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And what about the big make-up reveal to the cast and crew? "I wasn't there for it, but I think a few cast members scared a few people on set," Polti said. "I was bummed out I missed it!

"You'll always get the same reaction where people freak out at the very beginning. Then, after a week or so, [the make-up] just becomes part of the furniture."

Evil Dead Rise is out now in cinemas. Check out more of our Film coverage or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to see what’s on tonight.


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