A love of horror movies sparked Jason Hodges’ ultimate career goal – creating masks and prosthetic makeup.
“I took a sculpting class in high school and doing this was in the back of my mind,” said Hodges, a 2005 Evans High School graduate, who is a contestant on the SyFy series Face Off, which began its seventh season July 22. Face Off is a competition reality show exploring the career of special effects makeup. Contestants must create the concept and design for a variety of movie-worth creatures from zombies to aliens, but there’s always a twist to the concept.
There are 16 contestants competing for a grand prize of a VIP trip from Kryolan Professional Make-up to one of their 85 international locations, the 2013 Fiat 500 and $100,000.
Hodges, who now lives in Atlanta, works as kitchen manager for Vortex Bar and Grill while operating his own business, Undead Forest Studios.
When SyFy began airing Face Off, Hodges became one of its biggest fans.
“I’ve watched every episode,” he said.
After the fourth season, he decided to audition. The process of being selected is an involved one. He had to submit a video and a lot of paperwork. A final part of the audition process is a trip to Los Angeles to create a mask. They cast seasons five and six at the same time, and he barely missed the cut. As they were considering contestants for season seven, they called Hodges back, and he was selected.
All of the episodes for the season were filmed between March and May; however, Hodges has to be tightlipped about his finish. The theme of the first episode was “Life and Death” with half the contestants creating life makeup and the other half creating death makeup. Hodges was in the death category. He said he was relieved when he made it through the cut, but he wants to prove on the next episode that he can do better.
The episode also featured Robert Englund, of Freddy Krueger from Nightmare on Elm Street fame. While it was exciting to see the actor, Hodges said they didn’t get to talk with him.
“He came out and spoke a few words,” he said. “But there was no personal one-on-one with him.”
Hodges said the experience on the show is something he will never forget, and he’s formed relationships with his other cast members.
“I met a lot of amazing people,” he said. “We are all good friends.”
Hodges said he believes his appearance on the show will help his Undead Forest Studios business and looks forward to what the future holds for it.
“Atlanta is huge with movies and TV shows,” he said. “I’ve been planting a lot of seeds.”