disfigured faces: The Pillars of the Earth

The Pillars of the Earth

The Pillars of the Earth is a mini-series based on the novel by Ken Follett. Set during ‘The Anarchy’ of the twelfth century: the civil war for the English crown which followed the death of King Henry I and fought between Stephen of Blois and the Empress Matilda.

Central to the plot are the machinations of the ruthless and ambitious Hamleigh family – Lord Percy, Lady Regan (Sarah Parish), and their dastardly son, William.

Sarah Parish said:

This is my ugly era … I knew the book really well. My husband had read it and absolutely loved it – couldn’t stop talking about it – and he got it for everyone for Christmas. So I couldn’t believe I got offered the role, and what I couldn’t believe even more was that I’d been offered Regan Hamleigh. In the book she is described as so hideously ugly that people can’t even look at her. She’s covered in boils; she’s barely got any of her own teeth; thin as a rake – hideous in every way. She married because she had money and she was high up in the nobility.

She was very different in the adaptation, just very ghostly-looking, spooky, with dark eyes, a white face, and a very sinister birthmark - so it’s kind of Hollywood ugly … Thank god!

The makeup

Colleen Quinton was the makeup head of department; Kathy Kelso was the key makeup artist; Iván Pohárnok was the prosthetic makeup designer.