Let us travel back to a time when the world was still young, CG didn’t exist yet, and people like Oprah condemned movies like Interview with the Vampire because they were legitimately afraid of the “darkness” that supposedly came with it. A world in which Tom Cruise had to calm everyone down by saying, “It’s just a vampire movie.” Man, the ‘90s were wild.

To create fangy vamps so pale that one can see their veins through their skin was quite a challenge back then, but not one that Oscar-winning artist Stan Winston couldn’t handle. Winston simply went old school and painted those veins onto our two main actors, Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt … after they had hung upside down for a full half-hour.

Tom Cruise, Interview with the Vampire

Warner Bros.

Finally, an explanation for Cruise’s hair.

Yes, the makeup and special effects artist who also worked on T2, Jurassic Park, and Aliens didn’t just paint a couple of fine blue lines onto the boys and call it a day. No, he wanted those veins to be in the exact right spots — hence the hanging upside down part to make all the real veins easier to trace. CG today would’ve sorted out the eyes and the fangs, too, but back in the ‘90s and on the set of Anne Rice’s most popular story adaptation, the actors had to settle for molded fangs and those hard contact lenses that felt like they were slowly grinding away at your eyeballs. 

It makes sense that Pitt called it the “shoot from hell” and said the makeup and lenses were tough to deal with day in and day out. The entire production was challenging: “You go to work in the dark. You go to this cauldron, this mausoleum, and then you come out and it's dark. One day, it broke me.”

He even called the producer and asked how much it would cost to get him out of his contract. Apparently, the answer to that question was $40 million, and that’s why we, today, can enjoy Pitt in this classic vampire movie doing all of this:

Zanandi is on Twitter.

Top Image: Warner Bros.

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