The 95th Academy Awards was held by the Academy of Mothion Picture Arts and Sciences on March 12, 2023, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Camille Friend, who is a first-time nominee for Best Hair and Makeup for Wakanda Forever and the head of Marvel Hair Department, took us along during her Oscars experience.
Q: Did you have any beauty treatments ahead of the Oscars? Such as facials, manicure, botox, etc?
Friend: Yes! I wanted to look my best. I won’t lie, about 10 weeks ago, I had Restylane injections around my hairline from Carrie at Dr. Leif Rogers office. It lifts my face and looks very natural. Ten days prior, my facialist Tracey Hudson gave me a peel so my skin looked refreshed and glowing. My gel manicure from Lynee at Mod Nails used OPI's Malaga Wine for an ombre glitter. On Friday, I went to a local Korean spa for a body scrub and massage.
Q: How did you wear your hair?
Friend: I wore a wig that I cut. Cheryl Reed styled and finished my wig for the evening.
Q: How did you choose your look for the evening? Dress? Hair? Shoes?
Friend: The dress was by black designer Sergio Hudson. My friend, costume designer Sharon Davis got in touch with Sergio for the dress which was originally one sleeved. She added the mesh sleeve. My shoes were platform Prada; and my purse, a vintage cheetah print, Fendi pony-hair baguette. I made #106 on Vogue’s best dressed list of #189!! Vogue! That’s thrilling.
Q: What were your feelings walking the champagne carpet? Who accompanied you?
Friend: I brought my dear friend Carmen Cuba, whom I’ve known for more than 20 years. She’s a casting director in LA and her kids are my godsons. It was a very surreal moment arriving at the ceremony. I saw a lot of friendly faces that I’ve worked with before so it was very exciting. That morning, I did some meditation and breathwork with Nadine Hicks to calm my nerves and anxiety. I was excited for my first Academy Awards, but not nervous. I thoroughly enjoyed the moment.
Q: What surprised you most about the Oscars?
Friend: The size of the champagne carpet! I’ve been to other events where the red carpet in front of step-and-repeat is about as wide as one lane of traffic, but this was a three laner! Once you enter the auditorium, there’s drinks available and I had a lovely margarita. Under the chair, they provide a bottle of water, pretzels and some candy.
Q: How did you feel when the hair and makeup category was announced?
Friend: I was very excited. They move your seat closer to the stage when your category is announced in case you win. My good friend and client Samuel L. Jackson was one of the presenters so it was doubly exciting.
Q: Did you go to any afterparties?
Friend: No, we went to the Chateau Marmont for dinner and called it a night.
Q: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever showcased a multitude of hair styles with braids, texture and embellishments. What are a few you’re especially fond or proud of?
Friend: All of it! We were able to represent many different cultures. Every wig was cut and colored for that actor. All the hair accessories, face jewels and adornments were hand made by artisans, craftsmen and hair professionals.
Q: An African proverb says, “it takes a village to raise a child.” For the movies, it takes a village—or crew—of talented stylists and barbers to achieve all the big-screen looks. Would you like give a shout out to the team?
Friend: Yes, the Wakanda Hair Team is fantastic and there’s many on the team. The core day-to-day that helped make it happen; hairstylists Evelyn Feliciano, Marva Stokes, Amber Maher and Nancy Martinez; barbers Victor Paz, Derrick Washington and Jason Simmons; wigmaker Natashcha Ladek and Randy Stodghill, personal to Angela Bassett. And a very big thank you to all the 798 union members.
Q: Aside from Hair Scholars, what is your next project?
Hair Scholars is now offering online master classes and I strongly believe in mentoring. I’m starting to do press on the live action Little Mermaid. I designed the hair looks for Halle Bailey’s title character. Nex,t I’ll be in Atlanta as Samuel L. Jackson’s personal stylist. He will be starring in an adaptation of August Wilson’s Broadway play, Piano Lesson.
Note: While the hair and makeup team from Wakanda Forever were edged out by the team for The Whale for the 2023 Oscar, they are winners in our book!
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