Hellboy Movie Prop Mask Restoration

Restoring a screen used Hellboy movie prop mask from the Ron Perlman and Guillermo Del Toro film

While this mask may look like Ron Perlman in prosthetics, it’s actually a beautifully crafted full head foam mask used in the first movie. The Hellboy movie prop mask arrived to our studio in fair condition, although it was missing some key elements, including one missing horn and about half the hair! The original hair had been hand punched but at some point in production was shaved off.

Our team had to pluck each hair out and then hair specialist Michelle Nyree hand-punched new human hairs into the mask one at a time to recreate the original look and complete the hair on the mask’s right side. One horn did come with the mask, though it was detached. To address the missing horn, we carefully molded the horn that was present and then created a duplicate, cast in resin and painted to match the other.

There were some general repairs to be done as well. There were several cracks and tears, as often happens to foam screen used masks and props. Our restoration artists built up any missing areas and sculpted in the proper textures to make our repairs invisible once painted.

Support is always key when displaying a piece like this. Our team works backwards from the size and shape of the mask to create a form-fitting head to fit within, supporting the head and especially the bib or chest and shoulders, helping minimize the stress of gravity over time.

Our client wanted the bust completed to look as alive as possible, so we had our friends at Tech-Optics create a set of custom acrylic eyes made to look like Perlman’s lenses from the film. We mounted those in place and sculpted eyelids and blended that off to the mask’s skin, and after a bit of paint and styling, this Hellboy movie prop mask lives again!

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