LP caught up with Fame hair department head Sean Flanigan, who gave us the exclusive dish on the cast's 'dos.
Already humming the film’s title song? No worries—so are we! And we’re singing Joico celebrity spokesperson Sean Flanigan’s praise; the hair department head for Fame has to map out styles that withstand dance numbers, jumping, spinning—you name it. “This project takes you through four years of these students’ lives,” notes Flanigan. “Of course, that presents an interesting challenge when creating their styles. I have the characters’ hair reflect their changes and maturity.” Case in point: Jenny, played by Kay Panabaker. “Kay is a beautiful young lady,” says Flanigan. “She also happens to look very youthful, so portraying her character’s early high school days isn’t a problem. I put her hair in braids, and she retains a look of innocence. But, as Jenny nears graduation, it’s time for her to wear her hair down to show her transition into womanhood.”
On-set, Flanigan also employs wigs to simplify the transition between characters’ looks. “Through much of the movie, Kherington Payne—who portrays Alice—wears a ¾-wig. The look is edgy, with tousled texture and long bangs,” he shares. Later in the film, Alice reveals a new hairstyle to her mother: a short bob. “I want to show how Alice has become more rebellious over time; her haircut is a reflection of her new attitude. She’s no longer afraid to do what she wants.”
The aging is one thing, but how on earth do the characters’ styles “live forever” during all that dancing? Laughing, Flanigan divulges, “I use a lot of Joico Design Collection Molding Putty and Forming Polish on the guys. These two products work to add texture and make the actors’ styles hold under all the stage lights.”