Published on Monday, March 18, 2013
Glenn Hetrick, a judge on the SyFy show "Faceoff" and 1995 graduate of York College, will discuss his career as a special-effects artist at 5 p.m., March 25, in the College's DeMeester Recital Hall (Evelyn and Earle Wolf Hall). The event is open to the public free of charge.
Sole owner of a California-based special effects company called Optic Nerve Studios, Hetrick has served for three seasons as a judge on "Faceoff,” on which a dozen special-effects artists compete for $100,000 and a year’s supply of makeup. After graduating from York College with a Speech Communication major, he worked as both an actor and makeup artist on independent films in and around New York City, taught screen acting, and sculpted masks for Halloween companies.
Hetrick then traveled to California in pursuit of a career in Hollywood, where he began working on special effects for Optic Nerve Studios. As a designer, fabricator, sculptor and painter, he worked on several seasons of "Buffy," "Angel," "X-Files," "Freaky Links," "Babylon 5" and "Roswell," among others. Eventually, he began freelancing with several film studios. He served as sculptor, painter and fabricator on "Feast" and the "Pumpkinhead" sequels, worked with Ve Neil and Joel Harlowe on "Pitch Black: Chronicles of Riddick" and contributed to Steve Johnson's XFX on "Blade 2," and supervised the research and development on "Spider-Man 3."
As CEO of Optic Nerve Studios, Hetrick has personally supervised and designed every effect for hundreds of forensically accurate make-ups and corpses for "Crossing Jordan," Hugh Jackman's head and body replicas for "The Prestige," all of the make-up illusions and prosthetics that propel "Heroes" and "CSI: NY," the surreal effects in Sony's "Legion," custom wardrobe and instruments for Lady Gaga and a myriad of other projects. He continues to sculpt and paint on many of the effects and often applies the make-ups himself.