Kids vs Monsters hosts a cast full of unique monsters. The plot unfolds with the six wealthiest people in the world looking to get a break from their kids. They drop them off at a mysterious mansion, where the kids soon encounter characters such as the Batwolf, Mr. Beet, Rebecca the squid girl and more. In our interview below, special make-up effects supervisor Mark Garbarino tells us about the process of creating some of the monsters.
Make-Up Artist: Who at Amalgamated Dynamics, Inc. recommended you for the project?
Mark Garbarino: I have a fair past history working for them, both under and with other artists, such as David Anderson (Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant), Barry Koper (Bubble Boy) and Joel Harlow (Bedazzled), and I worked with Tom [Woodruff Jr.] and Alec [Gillis] at Stan Winston’s Studio for a year on Alien Nation and Leviathan.
MA: How long was the entire production—from prep to end?
MG: My hire, start to finish, was probably three weeks.
MA: What are the key monster make-ups you built?
MG: I was the onset prosthetic department supervisor. As far as pre-set designs, all was done without my influence at ADI. On set, my core team of David Leroy Anderson, John David Snyder and I designed the paint schemes for the faces of the characters. There is the Beet, a batwolf … and a small Sasquatch. Anderson applied the Batwolf [played by Richard Moll] with Lennie MacDonald or myself. Bigfoot (or Monsieur Babette) was Dave Snyder’s character, with Georgia Allen, Lufang Qu or myself. Squid girl [played by Alexandra Hulme] was my character, with Steven Anderson. The beet was applied by several teams of Jennifer Aspinall, Joe Podner, Christopher Nelson, Kevin Haney, Lennie and myself.
MA: The green tentacle lady looks especially interesting.
MG: She had a radio-controlled, mechanical apparatus, which needed to be adhered to her nose/mouth area, and then a cosmetic piece fit over this. The tentacles then were slid over small posts, with magnetic and adhesive hold. A webbing was ad-libbed from a sheet of new Baldiez to help the blend on some connections. Steven Anderson worked with me on this make-up. He improvised her lovely eye make-up and hands. ADI did do a Photoshop composition to guide a production-approved direction with this character.
MA: What was your biggest challenge?
MG: The Beet cowl wanted to shift and reveal the face prosthetic blend location. This is a common problem with big cowls, and this Beet head was big. Lennie MacDonald and I only finally sorted out a good solution by the third camera day. My attentions were spread thin, and the Beet got a different team applying for every day of shooting, which I think was four days.
MA: What was your favorite part about the project?
MG: My crew and the lightheartedness of the designs and the story. It was not a super serious film; ADI, the producers, actors and crew, were all easy going, supportive and appreciative.
All photos courtesy of Mark Garbarino
Kids vs Monsters is now available on DVD on Amazon Video.