"The ironic thing about my career is that much of my very best work was done before makeup was recognized in television and films. There were no awards given during my entire early television career for makeup. Only when I left NBC did they start giving the Emmy and it took me awhile to collect one. In films, there was no Academy Award during the 'Exorcist' or 'The Godfather' or a number of things I did. I was happy to live long enough to finally collect one."
About This Interview
In his five-and-a-half hour Archive interview, Dick Smith (1922-2014) speaks at length about the difficulties of establishing television's first makeup department, at NBC. He discusses the challenges of working with the studio's hot lights, the live schedule that left little time for makeup changes, and developing the correct colors and textures to be seen on the first television screens. Smith recalls the many mishaps that occurred while doing live television and how he eventually honed his skills and pioneered techniques that helped TV makeup departments both progress and grow. Smith details specific productions of Robert Montgomery Presents and Philco-Goodyear Playhouse as well as other programs, like Mark Twain Tonight! Jeff Kisseloff conducted the interview at Smith's home workshop in Sarasota, FL on May 15, 1996.