The Creation of Billy Butcherson







Billy the Butcher (Doug Jones), the poor old soul who had the unfortunate luck of capturing Winifred Sanderson’s fancy 300 years earlier, is brought back to life and forced to serve as an accomplice to the troublesome trio.

The character of Billy was a special effects project unto itself. Two and a half hours of preparation was required every day that Billy was to appear on camera. Special effects make-up artist Tony Gardner explained, “Doug wears a make-up appliance of a paper thin foam latex that covers everything from his ears forward and his entire neck. In addition, he wears a full body suit, long gloves with acrylic extensions on the ends of his fingers to add length, a ratty wig and big shoes with fake toes coming through them."


“The intention,” Gardner continued, “was to create a character who would walk a fine line between grotesque – because he has been dead for quite some time – and handsome.” Billy ended up as a sympathetic character, one who had suffered under Winifred’s evil hands much longer than any one else. Gardner envisioned the character as a ghoulish version of Ichabod Crane. “He is regal, an aristocrat, but very dead."


“We exaggerated Doug’s physical features,” Gardner explained. “He has a small nose and a very narrow face onto which we could place the latex, reshaping his face, with hollowed cheeks and deep-set eyes. Kenny wanted him to look innocent, a Bambi-look, with doe eyes. Doug’s eyes are very expressive and stand out with the make-up. Underneath his costume he wears the body suit with all the textural details of a zombie, exaggerated bone structure at the knees and elbows.”




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