Photo: Andrew Lipovsky/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal/Getty Images.
Today, Swift released the official music video for ‘The Man,’ and the star of the narrative is, fittingly, a man. But what many viewers don’t realize until the credits roll is that the man is actually Swift — in full drag.
When the music stops, the video cuts to a hyper-lapse of Swift showing her full transformation through layers and layers of thick prosthetics. After she spends what is likely hours in the hair-and-makeup chair — and covers her blazing blue eyes with dark colored contacts — Swift is completely unrecognizable with her new masculine nose and jawline, airbrushed bushy brows, and scarily-realistic facial hair.
On Twitter, Swift credited the team responsible for her dramatic physical transformation. “Alongside every great (the) man is a team of hardworking creatives who made this thing happen,” Swift tweeted. “Bill Corso & his incredible team and I have worked together before, turning me into a zombie… but convincing a significant amount of people I was a dude is our crowning achievement.”
Alongside every great (the) man is a team of hardworking creatives who made this thing happen. Bill Corso & his incredible team and I have worked together before, turning me into a zombie.. but convincing a significant amount of people I was a dude is our crowning achievement. pic.twitter.com/Rn7FmIDz55
— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) February 27, 2020
Corso — the Oscar-winning special effects artist also credited for Nicole Kidman’s makeover in Bombshell — gave a bit more background on the prosthetics process on his own Instagram. According to his caption, creating the male Taylor Swift involved not just prosthetics, but also a muscle suit, facial sculptures, a beard, eyebrows, a wig — and more than six people to put it all together.
Not only did Swift fully commit to morphing herself into a male character (or a few specific men throughout the story arch), she also gave herself due credit for the creative vision in the video. Importantly, the closing scene attributes ‘Taylor Swift’ — bolded and capitalized — as the star, director, writer, and owner of the ‘The Man.’ Because that’s how he’d do it.