Actor Warwick Davis is no stranger to playing characters that require a lot of makeup and prosthetics, and one of his recent roles that required such work was that of Lickspittle in Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. I recently had the pleasure of talking to Davis about his time on the Maleficent sequel, and he mentioned how when he was fully made up as Lickspittle, it made eating significantly more difficult because choosing the wrong foodstuffs could end up negatively affecting the makeup.
After noting how playing Lickspittle was quite similar to his time as Griphook in the Harry Potter movies when it came to the application process, Warwick Davis said the following:
Once you’re in these makeups, you don’t just take them off at lunchtime for an hour. It’s a three and a half hour application process, and then you wear that the entire day. And you have to maintain it also. I think it’s important as an actor that you look after the makeup. In the case of Lickspittle, two or three people have spent a few hours in the morning putting it on, and it’s up to you to look after that makeup. So you’re careful of what you eat, I eat very little when I’m wearing makeup, it’s about maintaining your fluids and what have you. So eating things that aren’t going to stretch them out. You couldn’t be chewing down on a chicken leg or anything like that at lunchtime, you gotta be careful.
So while Lickspittle may be among the most unique-looking of Warwick Davis’ characters, in order to maintain said look when he was on the Maleficent: Mistress of Evil set, he had to be conscious about his dietary choices. Chowing down on something like a chicken leg might have made for a delicious meal, but it could have led to all the stuff applied to his face and body being stretched out. That would undo those hours of labor the makeup artists poured into the Lickspittle look and require extra time to have Davis looking normal again… well, normal for a creature in the Maleficent world.
But picking the right food wasn’t the only challenge Warwick Davis dealt with while he was looking like Lickspittle. He also told me how because as a pixie, Lickspittle’s hands don’t look quite like a human’s, so he couldn’t hold onto or grab things as easily. As the actor put it:
And also your hands! People forget that, they look at the face, but your hands have to match your face. So I have hand prosthetics on and nails as well, and I don’t wear my nails long, but these were pretty long nails that Lickspittle has. So you can’t be doing the things that you normally do during a day when you’re wearing these hand makeups either. It takes a lot of discipline and a lot of patience, but nonetheless, it all becomes worthwhile. When you look in the mirror or see the end result on screen, it’s like, ‘Alright, that’s really fantastic.’ Hats off to the makeup artists who come up with the stuff.
So while enduring the makeup and prosthetics required for bring Lickspittle to life in Maleficent: Mistress of Evil was grueling, Warwick Davis was pleased with how things turned out in the final product. For those who didn’t check out the sequel or need a refresher, Lickspittle was the chief chemist for the main antagonist, Michelle Pfeiffer’s Queen Ingrith, who was tasked with finding a way to eliminate the denizens of the Moors.
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil is now available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital. Be sure to look through our 2020 release schedule to plan your trips to the theater this year accordingly.