Local makeup genius competes on Syfy’s ‘Face Off’


J. Anthony Kosar

EFFECTS MAKEUP SPECIALIST, Westmont-based J. Anthony Kosar, 27-year old award-winning, artist, creature designer, sculptor, theatre, film and commercials special effects creator and more, is one of 14 fiercely talented effects makeup artists competing on Season 4 of SyFy Channel’s Face Off. 

Promising to be “the biggest Face Off ever,” the reality show gives the competitors three days, under harrowing conditions and insane deadlines, to create the most grotesque creature or character makeup ever conceived. 

Kosar is frighteningly good at what he does.  As an intern at Hollywood’s Stan Winston Studio, he created effects for Avatar and Indiana Jones 4.  An internationally awarded fine artist and illustrator, he runs Kosart Effect Studio where he teaches all aspects of special effects makeup.  With his gifts, Kosar could end up being “the next great name in movie magic.”

WHO’S NEW.  Editor Jacob Kuehl, who earlier had an editorial stint at The Whitehouse Chicago and L.A., has joined Cutters L.A., from Final Cut L.A.  His specialty is special effects, heavy visual storytelling and comedy spots.  His work includes spots for Volkswagen, K-Swiss, Call of Duty, Buick and Chrysler.

TECH GURU GARY ALCOCK leads a panel discussion with video editor George Patay, Motion Post’s Ed Pickart, and editor Brian Kaempen on how to stay relevant in today’s fast-changing market at ChiCPUG’s Jan. 23 meeting at DDB’s office, from 6:15-9 p.m.

Added attraction: Christian Steele, house videographer for Grant Achatz’ restaurants Alinea, Avairy and Next, talks about shooting food and beverages in the heated atmosphere in Alinea, the city’s only 3-star Michelin restaurant. 

GUYS BOOK CLUB, the web series written and directed by George Zwierz, Jr. of Purple Stuff Productions, holds an invitation-only red carpet premiere at the Old Town Pour House Jan. 26, for the second series of 12 episodes shot last summer.

The Club stars Christian Stolte (Chicago Fire, Boss) and Francis Guinan (Boss), Tim Baltz from Second City Main Stage and Clay Guida, the popular mixed martial arts fighter.

A freelance editor, Zwierz, who is not married but claims “I’m a good listener,” came up with the idea of a group of married men who form a book club as an excuse to get away from their wives.

MCGARRYBOWEN ACED part of the United States Tennis Association $15-$20 million business, to create campaigns to promote the United States Open series of tennis tournaments.  The account’s other part went to DDB New York to create campaigns to promote the USTA’s brand, come up with brand strategy and digital ads. The Martin agency previously had the account.

THE THREE NOTABLE CREATIVES attending the Jan. 28 gathering of The Dinner Party at Mayne Stage are Tribeca Flashpoint CEO and art collector Howard Tullman; Black Ensemble Theatre artistic director, Jackie Taylor, indie rocker, Kelly Hogan, and The Trenchermen chefs, Michael and Patrick Sheerin.

Jazz singer Dee Alexander with Scott Hesse is the opening act.  Appetizer and entrée tastings from The Trenchermen are paired with wine from Vin Divino and chocolate by Vosges.

R.I.P.  HELIX CAMERA & VIDEO, for many years the biggest retailer of photography equipment and photo finishing.  Doors closed as the New Year started, after 50 years of service, a victim of customer loss to online and big box outlets, joining the demise of 35-year old Roscor last year for similar reasons.

The company had sold its big 177,00-sq. ft. headquarters building at 310 S. Racine last August, where it had occupied 50,000 sq. ft. of space in the building.   It had 45 employees around the time of the closing, down from a one-time high of 150.

Big things ahead for ReelChicago and you can be part of it by sharing your news with our ever-growing readership.  Send it to ruth@reelchicago.com.

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