Temporary tattoos on TV and Movies: Hollywood’s secret weapon

The 86th Oscar ceremony took place March 2014 at Dolby Theater of Los Angeles. This was THE big event of the year in the show business world.  Here, at Doodleskin’s blog, we love 7th Art and we are TV shows nerds. That’s why we decided to focus on Hollywood make-up artists’ secret weapon: temporary tattoos.

Prison Break Brad-Pitt


On set, everything’s begins with make-up but sometimes, it’s just not enough. When it’s an entire body part like the back that has to be covered by fake tattoos, wounds or burns, make-up artists calls professionals of temporary tattoos to buy time.

Do you remember the TV Show Prison Break with the handsome Wentworth Miller playing Michael Scofield? Our hero had a huge tattoo which covered the entire high part of his body: arms, back, chest, and belly. The actor spent at least 5 hours at the making-up to get this result. Unbearable, even with a Hollywood salary! Fortunately for him, make-up artists of the show had the great idea to call a formertattooist who moved into official supplier of make-up and temporary tattoos specialized in Special effects in Hollywood. These guys released everyone.

7th Art world uses a lot this «trick». Brad Pitt’s tattoos in Ocean movies, Sean Penn’s tattoo in the cult film Mystic River, Vin Diesel’s tattoos in XXX and Gary Oldman’s ones in Harry Potter.


Oh and we don’t forget the sex-symbol Ryan Gosling playing in the great movie «The place beyond the Pines » where his numerous tattoos are very important and full of sense. Impossible to think temporary tattoos are dorky seeing these pictures.

Of course, we also think about the famous reproduction of Mike Tyson’s tribal tattoos on the face of one of the hero of Very Bad Trip 2. Warner even had problems because of it as the design was copyright! Ouch, we can’t play with everyone!

harry poter