Graphic of a two-headed lizard from eXistenZ

Transcript: Spider: Dressing Ralph Feinnes

STEPHAN DUPUIS: Well the whole environment of Spider was like damaged people – in this place where he was sent. So you had people who might have a problem with alcohol, so there was a little bit of rosacea on the cheeks and the nose. They had to look realistic. They couldn’t look like Masterpiece Theatre, O.K.? And Ralph had to look like he was somebody who wasn’t taking a bath very often. He had to look like he had this layer of dirt on him at all times. And he smelled. (SNIFFS)

So what I did is I took a little bit of alcohol, I took a bunch of Witch Hazel, and I scooped up some Krylon brown, yellow, and black makeup. I mixed it in there to make a transparent sort of liquid, which I would spray. And it would creep into all the little crevices and all the pores and look like you just came from a dirty environment or you didn’t bother to wash for a month. So, yeah, it would creep everywhere and I called it Fashion Dirt. Just for fun. But it worked out great.

DENISE CRONENBERG: [For] Ralph Fiennes in Spider, we tried on sixty coats. Literally – sixty. Nigel and I – who’s my assistant designer in London… It’s sixty coats. And tons of shirts. And tons of… You know, he was so specific. Some worked, some didn’t work, and finally that process turned out wonderfully. And to me, the greatest reward is once we get that costume established, no matter what we go through. Even sixty coats. They’re thrilled in the end and it works. But sometimes it takes that. It’s not an easy process.