One of the many challenges facing the Paramount+ series “The Offer” was the task of ensuring its cast actually looked like the real-life figures they were portraying. Add in the fact that they were transforming into characters from one of the most iconic films of all time, and the challenge was doubly difficult.
“The Offer” tells the true, behind-the-scenes story of how “The Godfather” was made, you can see how actor Justin Chambers (“Grey’s Anatomy”) morphed into a “Godfather”-era Marlon Brando in an exclusive behind-the-scenes video above.
“I do film and I do TV, and TV wants film quality with TV time,” makeup department head Renee Vaca explains in the featurette, which details how Chambers was transformed using practical techniques.
“Justin’s got a great face to become Marlon Brando, we’re very lucky and he’s a lovely, amazing actor. He loves having the makeup done because it gets him into character,” fellow makeup department head Katy Fray adds.
But Vaca noted that as soon as she saw Chambers getting into character, it was easy to envision how the hair and makeup would make the transformation complete. “It’s not only the makeup and the hair and everything that’s added to make him look as closely to Brando as possible, he just owns it and just shifts.”
The teamed used a lot of the techniques that makeup artist Dick Smith utilized to turn Marlon Brando into Vito Corleone for the original “Godfather,” but instead of stuffing Chambers’ mouth with cotton balls to realize the iconic mouth shape, the team had a different idea.
“The most interesting thing that was did was make teeth plumpers, so we sent him to a dentist, got the impression of his teeth, and then sculpted and made it ourselves,” Fray reveals.
See the department heads as well as co-star Juno Temple discuss Chambers’ stirring look in the video above.
“The Offer” streams exclusively on Paramount+.