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The Mask

I had done a few elaborate costumes before the Mask, but this was the first one I fully committed to trying to get to look like the movie. The loopy Warner Brothers cartoon-like Mark as the Mask
The Author As The Mask
(Wyandotte Jacyees Haunted House)
personality of the character really appealed to me and I wanted to try and emulate the look and feel of the character.

Most of this costume centers on the bright yellow tuxedo. While I have seen some crazy tuxedos (powder blue anyone?). I had never seen that deep yellow shade.

Fortunately, I was heavily involved with a local costume shop by the name of Why Not? Costumes in Wyandotte through the Wyandotte Jaycees haunted house. Our organization had spent quite a bit of money with them and I felt pretty comfortable going in and asking if they could rig me something up because they made, rented and repaired their own costumes.

In September, I asked them if they would make a yellow tuxedo for me. (Pretty cheeky, given that Halloween was fast approaching - their busiest time of the year.) The owners daughter, my friend Kim, agreed to make this outrageous suit for me.

In many ways, it was the best part of this costume. She even threw in some spats for the outfit. I paid her about the same thing as I paid for regular suits, which meant it was a pretty good deal... in a way. (The way it was not a pretty good deal was in the number of times I wore it. But you can't look at cosplay that way, I guess.)

The Mask Costume
Another View
The other tricky part of this costume was the teeth. Carrey wore gigantic prosthetic teeth to make the character look more cartoonish and I wanted to have some too. In addition to Why Not? Costumes, a small Halloween shop had opened not far from where our Haunted House was located that year. I had scouted the place, but their focus was really on costuming and not props. (We didn't really need much in the way of costumes for the haunted house. Their costumes have to fit a variety of people and be versatile enough to work in a variety of environments. So we primarily used old long-sleeved coveralls for that. Not a a lot of need for the sort of costumes the little shop down the street carried.)

While I was in there looking around, I got to chatting with one of the workers, whose name I wish I could remember. (Alas, I don't.) He was explaining to me how he could make vampire fangs to be applied over people's teeth at the haunted house. Although we didn't need such elaborate things, I explained to him what I was looking for. He said he thought he could make a set of Mask teeth for me for $60. Sold.

I had to get a dental cast made for him as I recall, but the teeth still fit fairly well today. He made both lowers and uppers. The The Mask Costume
The Author Tries to Channel His Inner Carrey
(Wyandotte Jacyees Haunted House)
lowers could hardly be seen and it was an awful lot of plastic to have in my mouth, so I only wore the upper teeth for the costume. Unfortunately, my mouth isn't as large as Carrey's so some of the impact of the teeth was lost.

The rest of the costume was finding an appropriate matching set of braces and tie, getting a hat and doing the makeup. I tried to find braces and a tie that were similar to the lining that Why Not? had used on the coat and still reminiscent of the movie. (I couldn't find the exact pattern from the movie... this was before eBay was around.) The hat I found in a costume shop because the movie was recent enough that it was easy to get.

Now the makeup... that was a sonovagun for me. I knew nothing about makeup. I even purchased a book and read up on the topic, but I think the end results prove that I needed another book. Maybe a whole library. In the end, I wound up cutting a Mask mask apart and gluing what I felt were the salient bits on me. I don't advise doing this... the whole thing looked too lumpy. (I apparently hadn't learned enough about blending latex into your skin.) I did learn that it was probably best for me to steer clear of complex makeup after this costume.