A true piece of Hollywood treasure is now on display for the public to see and appreciate. The makeup case belonging to Lon Chaney, the legendary “Man of a Thousand Faces”, who achieved Horror immortality with his portrayals of THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME, THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, and the pseudo-vampire in the lost film LONDON AFTER MIDNIGHT. He would, had his untimely passing not prevented it, have portrayed Dracula in the 1931 classic, the role that would go to Bela Lugosi. The man is the very definition of a cinematic legend, and it’s fitting that his makeup case, the simple, nondescript case from which he was able to create some of the most iconic depictions in movie history, will be displayed in a museum. Kudos to Michael F. Blake, owner of the case, for loaning it to the Natural History Museum in Los Angeles through May of 2022.
If you want to get a peek inside that case, though, you’ll need to visit the museum before the second week in February. To preserve some of the items it contains, the case can only be left open for a limited amount of time. It’s nice to see the case treated as the genuine historic artifact that it is.