CreatureGeek

Len Peralta, Frank Ippolito

This is the SFX Makeup podcast from a fan and pro perspective! Len Peralta is the fan, an artist with a keen interest in makeup and special effects. Frank Ippolito is the pro, a working professional in the FX industry with movies and TV under his belt. Together they cover a variety of topics, interview guests and geek out in general about makeup.

All Episodes

Frank and Len are back! On this first episode back in over a year, Frank and Len catch up about what's been happening since the end of days. We discuss Frank's gig as a Mon Calamari, dance around some of cool stuff Frank has been working on and basically compliment how good each other look. It's good to be back!  Enjoy!

Jun 22

36 min 23 sec

Frank and Len creep ever so closer to show 100. On show 98, the first episode of 2020, we welcome Jeff Jingle. Jeff is a freelance writer/director and Animatronic FX Designer who has worked for Rick Baker's Cinovation, Henson Studio, Steve Johnson's XFX, Legacy FX among many others. Jeff talks about getting the movie  he co-wrote 10 Minutes Gone starring Bruce Willis and Michael Chiklis and how it's a little miracle just to get it produced. Thanks for listening!

Jan 2020

1 hr 3 min

Frank and Len return after an extended hiatus for a new show!  We talk about Frank's busy schedule, what has happened since we last recorded and all kinds of interesting tidbits about social media and working for a large scale project.  It's always interesting and we're glad to be back! Thanks for listening!

Sep 2019

1 hr 11 min

On Episode 96 of Creaturegeek, Frank and Len welcome Miles Teves and Everett Burrell who created the VFX for Netflix's smash hit The Umbrella Academy. Hear all about the creation of Pogo (which was helped brought to life by Frank and his shop Thingery) and the amazing wizardry that fleshed out this amazing character. It's a must listen for anyone interested in the behind the scenes of making an big budget Netflix show.

Apr 2019

56 min 49 sec

On this 95th episode of CreatureGeek, Frank and Len welcome FX Industry Veteran and incredible character and caricature artist Mark Tavares.  Mark has worked at many notable shops including Rick Lazzarini's Character Shop, KNB FX and Don Post Studios.  His artwork is now on display in Altadena, CA in an exhibition based around Rod Serling's Night Gallery.  It's a great listen and thank you for your continued support!

Jan 2019

1 hr 1 min

Frank and Len welcome the amazing Jamie Kelman.  Jamie has been part of the  FX industry for nearly 30 years and has worked on a bunch of shows including the critically acclaimed movie "Vice" where he transformed Sam Rockwell into Former President George W. Bush. There are a TON of great stories in this episode so don't miss a second. Thanks for your continued support!

Jan 2019

1 hr 8 min

On this episode (our last of 2018), Frank and Len welcome back the incredible Mark Viniello.  Mark is currently working on a ton of NDA stuff, but he's still able to talk about some of incredible stuff he's worked on in his illustrious career. We cover a lot of ground in this episode and it's always great to hear Mark's stories. Thank you for listening and thank you for your continued support!

Jan 2019

1 hr 20 min

Frank and Len welcome back George Frangadakis of Immortal Masks! George discusses getting through the growing pains of running an exploding FX business. What to do.  What not to do.  And everything in between. It's fascinating listening!  Thank you for your support!

Dec 2018

1 hr 27 min

Frank and Len return for a new show! One this episode, Frank dovetails off our discussion about how to get a job and talks about what to do when you have the job.  What are the do's and dont's of working for an FX Shop?  What should you be thinking about during and after your stint at a shop like Thingery?  This is important info, folks!  Don't go looking for a gig without listening to this episode!

Oct 2018

51 min 4 sec

On this *new* episode of CreatureGeek (recorded in July), Frank and Len discuss how to apply for a job in the FX industry. This is really important information, folks.  So please take notes.  Your next job may rely on it!

Sep 2018

50 min 59 sec

It's a solocast with Frank and Len!  On this episode, we chat about Frank's upcoming guest judge stint on the new season of BattleBots on Discovery.  We talk about how Thingergy is helping out with Pixelogic and Magic Wheelchair at San Diego Comic Con.  We spoil Avengers: Infinity War and Deadpool 2.  And Frank does his best to answer questions from a young listener to help his AP English Project. It's great fun!

May 2018

1 hr 21 min

On this episode, we welcome Chat Zar - a sculptor, creature designer and fine artist who is known for his dark, visual style. His unique take on art and design has landed him work on such projects as Terminator Salvation, Hellboy, Men in Black 2 and Planet of the Apes, just to name a few. And like us here at Creaturegeek, he hosts a podcast called the Dark Art Society. He also runs a Patreon for his artwork - just search Chet Zar over at Patreon.

May 2018

1 hr 16 min

Today's guest is one of our favorite guests ever on CreatureGeek, Steve Johnson. Steve's resume is an amazing laundry list of some of the best and most iconic shows ever created. He's also one of the most outspoken people in the visual effects industry. Steve has just launched a new Kickstarter for Volume 2 of his memoirs entitled Rubberhead: Sex Drugs and Special FX. And for the first time ever, we are doing a CreatureGeek AMA (Ask Me Anything) based on questions that you've asked over the past few weeks. It's an amazing episode that you can't get anywhere else! Enjoy!

Apr 2018

1 hr 24 min

Today's guest joins the second timer club here on Creaturegeek. Neill Gorton is a BAFTA winning legend in the makeup industry, bringing his unique talent to such shows as Ex Machina, Thor, Red Dwarf, Judge Dredd and Doctor Who - just to name a few. In addition to all this awesomeness, he is the publisher of Prostethics Magazine, one of the best resources for high level special effects info today.

Mar 2018

1 hr 9 min

This episode's guest was the winner of the ninth season of FaceOff - Nora Hewitt. Since then, Norahas lent her talent to a ton of NDA projects we can't talk about happening at Thingery as well as indie flicks Mail Order Monster and Blood on the Leaves. She's also a graduate of the Tom Savini Special Effects Makeup Program in Pittsburgh, PA. And she's also involved in a lot of other stuff that I'm sure we've missed. 

Mar 2018

47 min 31 sec

On this episode of CreatureGeek, we talk to makeup/special effects artist Bart Mixon.  Bart has worked on pretty much everything for the past 25 years including Men In Black, Fight Night Part Two, Pet Sematary and one of Len's all-time favorite films of all time, Wes Anderson's Rushmore. His current credits include Avengers Infinity War, Bright and Star Trek Discovery. But he is best known, however, for his iconic Pennywise the Clown makeup on Tim Curry from the 1990 miniseries, IT.

Feb 2018

1 hr 21 min

On this episode, we welcome Abby Smith, Steven Saunders, Joaquin Loyzaga and Chris Menges of WETA Workshops in New Zealand. They join us hot off the heels of a big win at the 16th Annual VES Awards (the Visual Effects Society). Their model work for Blade runner 2049 won them the award for Outstanding Created Environment in a Photoreal Feature. Their miniature work - or as some may call it - BIGature work - is a phenomenal testament to the survival of practical effects in a CGI world and the creation of hand made environments. Listen in and hear one of the most amazing stories on how on visual effects artist got his big chance to work at WETA Workshop.

Feb 2018

1 hr 1 min

On this episode, our first show of 2018 and from the brand new Thingery studios, we celebrate the seven year anniversary of the premiere of Face/Off. Special guest and Face/Off Alumni, Ben Ploughman.  We chat about memories from the show, the Oscars and how Ben got started in the biz. Don't forget subscribe to us in iTunes, follow us on Spotify and make sure you don’t miss a single episode! And of course, if you're digging the show, throw us some bucks at our Patreon page!

Jan 2018

56 min 59 sec

On this episode, Len and Frank return for a 2017 wrap up.  We discuss plans for 2018, Frank's new shop, follow-up of Frank leaving Tested, Last Jedi spoilers, what large companies could do to fan-driven fabrication and how to get our show.  Speaking of which, subscribe to us in iTunes, follow us on Spotify and make sure you don't miss a single episode!  And if you're digging this podcast, go over to our Patreon page and throw us a couple of bucks if you choose.

Dec 2017

42 min 57 sec

On this episode, Frank and Len look at the hobbyist angle of doing your own design work with our guest Tim Shea. You may recognize some of Tim's work from past Tested videos, although you would never know he is an amateur designer. Tim just wrapped up a whirlwind weekend at DesignerCon in LA and he chats all about it, as well as the Predator design, Frank's haunted apartment and more. If you're digging what you hear, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Nov 2017

53 min 11 sec

Frank and Len close the classic monster trilogy of podcasts by covering one of our favorite topics, werewolves. And we've brought in werewolf expert and master sculptor Mike Hill to chat about lycanthropes. We also look at these lists of favorite werewolf film from Paste Magazine and Den of Geek and see if they match our list. (SPOILER: Mostly, they do.) If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Nov 2017

1 hr

On this episode of CreatureGeek, Frank and Len chat about a bunch of stuff that's been out, coming soon and more including Blade Runner 2049 chat, IT and Stephen King talk, The Orville, Halloween and more. Plus a shout out to Haunted Houses and Mike Mekash (husband of Eryn Krueger Mekash) If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Oct 2017

53 min 41 sec

Tonight's guest is Kevin McTurk, a prolific special effects and creature technician who has worked for shops like Stan Winston, WETA and Jim Henson's Creature Shop and has lent to talents to projects like Peter Jackson's King Kong, Iron Man 1 and 2, Jurassic Park and last summer's runaway hit for Netflix, Stranger Things. He's here to talk about his latest Kickstarter project The Haunted Swordsman, the third installment of what he describes as "Ghost Story Puppet Films". Here's the link to the project. It needs your help! If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Sep 2017

50 min 37 sec

Today's guest is a puppet builder and performer with over 30 years of experience under his belt. Over the years, Mark Bryan Wilson has lent his talent to such films as Team America, Men In Black, BeetleJuice and Fright Night. But he is probably best known for being the main puppeteer of Slimer on the original Ghostbusters film. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Sep 2017

58 min 7 sec

On this special episode of CreatureGeek, Frank and I welcome the legendary Michael Westmore who reads sections of his new book Makeup Man. There are some great stories in this ep including ones about Star Trek, The Munsters and an infamous Pink Lady painting. Thanks to Mr. Westmore for coming in and reading from his book and listen in to find out how to get a signed copy of it. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Aug 2017

44 min 41 sec

Today's guest is one of the most iconic and recognized makeup artists in the industry, Leonard Engelman. He has been working professionally for over fifty years and has lent his talent to such films as Rocky, Ghostbusters, Heat and Batman Forever, to name only a few. He has made up some of the most beautiful women in the world inlcuding Cher, Meg Ryan, Michelle Pfeiffer, Sigourney Weaver, Faye Dunaway, Julie Andrews and many more. Leonard also gives us some insight into the Academy's selection process for the makeup category, which is fascinating. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Aug 2017

1 hr 12 min

Even though Frank is in China for work, we have a new CreatureGeek for you! This week, Len and Frank do their Comic-Con wrapup, they talk more about cosplay and then they discuss more about running your own business and things to expect and how to handle different situations. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Jul 2017

1 hr 3 min

Today, Frank and Len welcome Bonnie Morgan. Bonnie is a talented actress, a daring stunt woman and an extraordinary contortionist who is probably best known for her role as the weirdly contorted Samara from The Ring Two and Rings 3. Her acting and stuntwork has been featured in such films as Hellboy 2: The Golden Army and Men In Black 2 where she played a character called Jabba The Butt. She is also the first guest who can legitmately say she was raised by circus performers. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Jul 2017

1 hr 15 min

On this episode, Frank and Len talk to Peter Abrhamson. Peter is a special effects pro, an animatronic technician and a puppeteer who hs worked on such shows as I, Robot, HellBoy and Van Helsing just to name a few. He has his own company called Ronin FX and currently works at Applied Invention which has allowed him to dabble in a little something called robotics - including a little show called Battlebots. We are talk about David Lynch and of course, Legos! If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Jul 2017

1 hr 3 min

Today, Frank and Len talk to our mutual friend and incredible pro fabricator Bill Doran AKA Chinbeard from Punished Props. Bill continues the discussion about working in cosplay professionally and the joys and pitfalls of doing it all on your own to make a living. It's great info you can't miss. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Jun 2017

54 min 22 sec

Today, Frank and Len interview the legendary Michael Westmore. Mike's career spans over 40 years but his family has been involved in makeup for longer than that: his grandfather George created the very first studio make-up department 100 years ago this year. His family has worked on iconic films like Gone With the Wind and the Creature of the Black Lagoon. He is best know for his work on the Star Trek franchise, Rocky and Raging Bull, the movie that helped create the SFX makeup category for the Oscars. And of course, he has served as a mentor (including to our very own Frank Ippolito) on the Syfy Show Face Off. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. We truly appreciate your support!

Jun 2017

1 hr 12 min

On this episode, Frank and Len interview the legendary Rob Burman. Rob is a master sculptor who has been playing with clay for over 40 years. He is the third generation of FX artist, following in the steps of his father and grandfather before him. Over his career, he has lent his talents to such films as The Thing, The Fly, Star Trek, Terminator 2 and much, much more.

Jun 2017

1 hr 11 min

Frank and Len are doing a solo cast! No guest this week. But a lot of chat about new stuff coming out this fall, like Orville and Star Trek: Discovery and of course, Guardians. Also, Frank and Len discuss cosplayers, more business stuff and Frank tries to dig out of hole he digs for himself early in the show. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

May 2017

59 min 28 sec

Frank and Len welcome the incredible Gabe Bartalos to the show this week. You may recognize Gabe's work from cult classics as Leprechaun, Basket Case 2, Gremlins 2 and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. He refined his skills under Tom Savini and Rick Baker before going on to start Atlantic West Effects, a full service FX studio specializing in sculpture, prosthetics and animatronics. In addition to being a special effects guru for over 3 decades, he is also the writer and director of two feature films, "Skinned Deep" and "Saint Bernard" (which sounds awesome, btw). If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

May 2017

54 min 29 sec

Frank and Len talk to a true living legend - Kerry O'Quinn. Anyone born in the 70s and 80s and is a fan of horror and sci-fi owes Kerry a huge debt of gratitude. He is a writer and publisher of some of the most influential magazines in the industry including Starlog, Fangoria and Cinemagic just to name a few. He talks the inception of these fan mags and also shares some great info about the very first Star Wars Celebration. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Apr 2017

1 hr 1 min

Frank and Len loved Women's Month last month that we are continuing with it in April. Today's guest is Eryn Krueger Mekash. Eryn has over 30 years experience as an Emmy award winning makeup artist in the TV and film industry. You might have seen her work on such shows as Nip/Tuck, Scream Queens, American Crime Story and more. She is also the department makeup head on American Horror Story. She shares some great stories, so buckle up and listen in! If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Apr 2017

1 hr

Frank and I are rounding out Women's Month on CreatureGeek. This episode, we go inside baseball and shop talk about silicon appliances with the amazing Jo Holland. Jo is an SFX artist who knows her stuff when it comes to running silicon appliances and you'll definitely learn something during this show. So grab your pencils and get ready to Google because the info comes at your fast and furious. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. Thanks for listening! And be sure to listen until you find out to how to get a new pack of CreatureGeek stickers!

Mar 2017

1 hr 8 min

Frank and I are continuing to celebrate International Women's Month on CreatureGeek by showcasing the women of SFX/Makeup during the month of March. Now, you may not recognize today's guest from any current movies, but keep watching - because Frank and I have our money on our young guest becoming a makeup pro. 10 year old Bela Meriwether has has the great fortune of learning directly from the master himself, Mr. Rick Baker (who she affectionately refers to as "Mr. Rick") and knows more about older movies than some adults do. She's like an old soul in a young body. Listen in! She's awesome! If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. Thanks for listening! And be sure to listen to how to get a new pack of CreatureGeek stickers!

Mar 2017

47 min 48 sec

We are celebrating International Women's Day on CreatureGeek. Actually, Frank and I are planning on celebrating Internationall Women's MONTH on CreatureGeek by showcasing the women of SFX/Makeup in the month of March. On this show, we welcome the wonderful Beth Hathaway. Beth is a special effect artist and puppeteer who has worked on such shows as Jurassic Park, Terminator 2 and Edward Scissorhands. She was, along with former CreatureGeek Guest, Kirk Thatcher, a judge for Jim Henson's CreatureShop Challenge on Syfy. Listen in! She's awesome! If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. Thanks for listening! And be sure to listen to how to get a new pack of CreatureGeek stickers!

Mar 2017

50 min 32 sec

Today's guest on CreatureGeek is Vincent Van Dyke. Vincent is a Primetime emmy award nominated make-up artist whose work has been seen on such shows as Nip/Tuck, Dexter and Grey's Anatomy. He has also lent his prosthetic prowess to big name films like Star Trek, Batman V Superman and The Revanant. He is currently working on the biopic I, Tonya which will turn Margot Robbie into the infamous figure skater Tonya Harding. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. Thanks for listening! And be sure to listen to how to get a new pack of CreatureGeek stickers!

Feb 2017

1 hr 2 min

Today's guest on CreatureGeek is Andy Clement. Andy is a makeup artist who is best known for his work on big name films such as Interstellar, Deadpool, Cloverfield and Guardians of the Galaxy. He was also a business and teaching partner with the master Dick Smith and is the keeper of the information passed on by him via the Dick Smith Special FX Makeup Course, a must-know for anyone in or thinking of getting into the business. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. Thanks for listening!

Feb 2017

59 min 17 sec

CreatureGeek returns for February with one of the premiere makeup artists and sculptors working today - Norman Cabrera. Norman's list of credits are a compendium of the best fantasy and horror have to offer and include such titles as The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead, Drag Me to Hell, Kill Bill Voume 1, Hellboy, The X-Files, Harry and The Hendersons and many more. He reminisces about the 80s, the wild west of makeup and working with one of the greats, Rick Baker. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Feb 2017

58 min 21 sec

Today's guest is on loan to us from the UK - Stuart Bray. Stuart has lent his talent in special effects and prostethics to such big budget features as Shaun of the Dead, The Mummy Returns and Gladiator. He's also worked on such iconic small screen shows like Game of Thrones, Waking The Dead (not to be confused with The Walking Dead), Hex and Doctor Who. He also has a fantastic blog at LearnMakeupEffects.com and his own podcast called Battles with Bits of Rubber. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Jan 2017

59 min 14 sec

On this episode, Frank and I talk with Master Mold Maker, Rob Freitas. Rob has been in the industry for decades and is considered by many best in his speciality - mold making. Let's put it this way: Rob is the guy that Rick Baker calls when he needs someone to make molds. It's a fascinating chat with one of the premiere mold makers in the business. Also, if you're enjoying this podcast and you want to hear more, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Jan 2017

1 hr 26 min

CreatureGeek is back for 2017! Our first show is an extra long one with an incredible guest. This week, Frank and I welcome sculptor and concept designer, Jordu Schell, who has been working in the FX industry for over 30 years. His resume includes such films as James Cameron's Avatar, Hellboy, Galaxy Quest and 300. He also has an IndieGogo campaign running for his first movie Remote Viewing. Check it out and throw it a few bucks to put it over the edge!

Jan 2017

1 hr 22 min

On this ep, (The FINAL ep for 2016) Frank and I welcome Jeff Levine. Jeff is a producer who has had ,and continues having, an incredible career. Jeff talks a lot about the movie industry from a producer's viewpoint and how that affects everyone working on a film, especially the FX and makers. It's a fascinating hour that you just have to hear. If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Nov 2016

1 hr 22 min

This episode of CreatureGeek, Frank and I talk Dracula and Vampires. We chat about the original 1931 Lugosi joint as well as our favorite (and no so favorite) Vampire films. We also chat about a lot of other stuff that you are bound to enjoy. So go now and enjoy it! If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Oct 2016

1 hr 4 min

This episode of CreatureGeek, we talk to Norm Chan, the man behind Tested.com! We chat about my visit to Robert Kurtzman's Creature Corps Studio and The Paranormal Penitentiary, about the haunted house season and we get into it in our discussion about Westworld. Yee-hah! Listen in! If you're digging this podcast, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Oct 2016

48 min 14 sec

On this week's episode of CreatureGeek, Frank and I welcome Tory Belleci formerly of the show Mythbusters and of the upcoming Netflix show "The White Rabbit Project" - starting December 9th. Tory chats about his time being a model maker with ILM and his safety and well being as a Mythbuster. Thanks for listening! Also, If you're digging this show, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks. Thanks to our sponsor ScotteVest!

Oct 2016

53 min 9 sec

On this episode of CreatureGeek (due to a misnumbering error is actually our 50th show!) we talk to legendary SFX makeup artist, Robert Kurtzman. Robert is the original K of KNB EFX, one of its original founders, and is now running his own company in his home state of Ohio - Robert Kurtzman's Creature Corps. If you're in the Ohio area, his newest project - Paranormal Penitentiary - is opening THIS WEEKEND at the site of the Mansfield Reformatory. He talks moving from LA to Ohio, working in this environment and of course, classic horror hosts. If you're digging this show, please head over to http://www.patreon.com/creaturegeek and support us with a few bucks.

Sep 2016

50 min 3 sec