Kazuhiro Tsuji, David Malinowski and Lucy Sibbick won the 2018 Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling Oscar for their work on Darkest Hour at the 90th Academy Awards, held March 4 at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. This is the first Oscar win for all three artists.

Oscar winners Kazuhiro Tsuji, Lucy Sibbick and David Malinowski pose backstage | Photo by Michael Baker
Kazuhiro Tsuji, Lucy Sibbick and David Malinowski pose backstage with their Oscars

Tsuji gave the onstage speech for the team, saying, “Firstly, we would like to give our heartfelt thanks to Gary Oldman. It was a real honor to be on this incredible journey with you, and we would not be standing here today if it wasn’t for you. You’re a wonderful actor, a dedicated artist and a true friend. We thank you for that. … This is a dream come true for all of us. Thank you.”

@deverill_weekes with @michaelkeyreal #OscarWatch #AcademyAwards

A post shared by Make-Up Artist Magazine (@makeupartistmag) on

Make-Up Artist magazine’s editor-in-chief Michael Key was happy to be at the awards to show support for the Oscar-winning make-up team, as well as for all the nominees. (Pictured above with Tsuji, Sibbick and Malinowski)

In a backstage interview, newly minted Oscar winner Gary Oldman was asked if he thought CG could replace Tsuji’s work. Here is his response:

“I hope not.  You know, the ‑‑ the clothes, make-up and clothes are the things that are the closest things to the actor. And they actually touch the actor. And they are the first people that you meet in the morning and they are really ‑‑ they are vital individuals that you interact with to ‑‑ I’ve done motion capture and you are in a gray void with no costume, and they then CG it on you later. So to lose that kind of connection, you know, we really ‑‑ we worked as a team. And plus, it’s always easier, I think, to throw something out because something new comes along. You know, just because you can. I mean, he’s a consummate artist and it was really my ‑‑ once I had stepped off the ledge, as it were, with Joe Wright, I said to Joe, it’s contingent on getting Kazuhiro because, for me, he was really the only person on the planet that could have ‑‑ that could have pulled it off. I mean, I think he delivered. Yeah.”

Oscar winners Kazuhiro Tsuji, Lucy Sibbick and David Malinowski pose backstage | Photo by Michael Baker
Kazuhiro Tsuji, Lucy Sibbick and David Malinowski pose backstage with their Oscars

Tsuji also fielded a number of questions backstage after the win. One in particular was in regards to him being one of the only Asians up for an Oscar:

Q: “So there are very few Asians nominated at this year’s Academy Awards; I think you’re the only one, and you’re the winner as well. How does that feel?”

A. “I don’t want to think about I’m Asian. I’m just doing what I love to do. So, I hope everyone feels that way because it’s ‑‑ as soon as we start to think what the race we are, it’s not good. It doesn’t work that well.”

To listen to the full backstage interview, visit the academy’s page here.

Or, for more on the film’s make-up, see Issue 129 and Issue 130, and our exclusive artist-narrated Oscar consideration video.

Visit our Oscar Watch 2018 page for our complete 2018 Oscar coverage.

All academy photos by Michael Baker / © A.M.P.A.S.