March 15, 2018 Interviews

Hollywood. The entertainment capital of the world and home of The Oscars, the most prestigious award ceremony on the planet.

It’s certainly a long way from Peterborough, or to be precise the home in Dogsthorpe you grew up in, but this week David Malinowski – the 2018 Oscar winning special effects make-up artist made his first return to the city since winning the award. He was back in Peterborough to visit his parents, Paul and Christine who kindly invited ESP’s Marc Hernandez along to meet the latest addition to the family. A little chap called Oscar.

On the decking of his parents back garden (minus the stylish tuxedo he wore for the Academy Award ceremony) David kindly recreated the moment he received the Oscar on stage at the Dolby Theatre, Hollywood!

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David won the Oscar 10 days ago for ‘Best Make-up and Hairstyling’ thanks to his incredible work as the prosthetic supervisor on the film Darkest Hour (alongside colleagues Kazuhiro Tsuji and Lucy Sibbick) – helping to transform actor Gary Oldman into Winston Churchill for the film. David’s Oscar followed up his BAFTA win in February at the Royal Albert Hall together with the Critics Choice Award and the Make-up Artists and Hairstyling Guild Award (both presented at events in Los Angeles).

David came back from his home in Aylesbury with his Oscar and BAFTA to see family, friends, and visit some of his old schools in the area. Standing in his family’s back garden, a week on from returning from Hollywood David described the last week as being “Pretty surreal”. He arrived back in the UK last Wednesday after an eventful flight home with wife Liz.

“It was good fun on the plane, I was just carrying the Oscar in my hand and everyone who saw it wanted a picture, and all the flight crew said ‘We need to get a picture with you!’ so that was quite funny, they lined up on the steps at the end of the flight, but it’s just been non-stop really with interviews and photoshoots since.”

David-Malinowski-IMG_7062David returned to Peterborough before he starts back at work in order to visit one of his former schools in the city and Stamford New College where he trained in 1995/96.

“They’re going to give me a tour around there because they said to me ‘You haven’t been here for a while have you?’ and I said ‘It would’ve have been…’ and then realised ‘Christ that was 20 years ago!’ so obviously it would have changed.”

He’ll give a short talk to all students studying on the college’s make-up and media courses, and will be taking the awards to show (and hopefully) inspire them.

“I’ve also brought some make-up bits and pieces with me, a few things that students wouldn’t be able to afford that I just want to give out to them. I’ve asked the tutors to decide how they want to decide who gets what.”

Meanwhile, parents Paul and Christine say their phone hasn’t stopped ringing with calls and text messages since David’s Oscar win. Dad, Paul said, “Proud parents doesn’t even come close to how we’re both feeling. To think that our son, an ordinary guy from Peterborough with an extraordinary talent is now an Oscar winner is one of those things you only think happens to other people. It’s both a surreal and humbling experience.”

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Paul and Christine still live in the family home David grew up in – just around the corner from Dogsthorpe fire station where Paul worked at one time, serving in the Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service for 30 years. One of David’s childhood memories is practicing ‘special effects’ with a spare first aid training kit his dad brought home. A story he told during in an extended interview in Hollywood earlier this month. (The story begins at 5 mins 25)

We’ll have a full interview with David in ESP Magazine’s April issue.

Mark Hernandez