Makeup artist Kazu Hiro on Monday picked up an Oscar for best makeup and hairstyling at the 92nd Academy Awards in Los Angeles.
Hiro — formerly known in Japan as Kazuhiro Tsuji — was nominated alongside Anne Morgan and Vivian Baker for his work on “Bombshell,” a biographical drama about a group of female Fox News employees who set out to expose the sexual harassment meted out by the company’s CEO.
The film, directed by Jay Roach and written by Charles Randolph, stars Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie. Theron was nominated for best actress in a leading role and Robbie scooped a nomination for best actress in a supporting role.
Hiro, 50, has made a name for himself in the art of prosthetics, having created visual effects for such films as “Men in Black,” (1997) “Planet of the Apes” (2001) and “Hellboy” (2004). He also received Oscar nominations for “Click” (2006) and “Norbit” (2007), but had to wait until 2018 for his first win.
His work transforming Gary Oldman into British wartime Prime Minister Winston Churchill for 2017’s “Darkest Hour” saw him pick up an award alongside David Malinowski and Lucy Sibbick the next year for best makeup and hairstyling.
For “Bombshell,” Hiro told Dateline that he employed several methods to transform the actors into their characters. These ranged from a temporary nose plug to make Theron’s nostrils appear larger, to a prosthetic attachment to make Kidman’s nose appear “thicker and rounder.” John Lithgow, playing Fox News CEO Roger Ailes, was fitted with an attachment to make his lips appear fuller and had his hairline shaved to match that of Ailes.
Hiro and his colleagues were nominated alongside the makeup and hairstyling staffs for the films “Joker,” “Judy,” “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” and “1917.”
A leading artist in ultrarealistic sculptures and prosthetics, Hiro was born in Kyoto in 1969 and later moved to Los Angeles to pursue film work. His first production was the 1989 Japanese film “Sweet Home,” by Kiyoshi Kurosawa.
He obtained U.S. citizenship in 2019, upon which he changed his name.