Spectral Motion

Mike Elizalde is an Academy Award nominated prosthetic makeup designer, animatronics designer, and Screen Actors Guild puppeteer. He is also President and Creative Director of Spectral Motion, Incorporated.

Born in Mexico in 1960, Mike immigrated to the United States with his parents when he was five years old. That’s when Mike’s interest in movie monsters began. His earliest creative influences included films like Frankenstein and The Creature From the Black Lagoon. The images in those films would stay with Mike his entire life and light the path for his career as a creature designer.

But it was perhaps the Dick Smith Advanced Course that had the greatest impact upon Mike’s career as a special make-up effects artist. Mike learned his foundation skills from the greatest make-up artist that has ever lived, Dick Smith. With these invaluable lessons, Mike, along with his wife and business partner Mary, established Spectral Motion, Inc. in 1994.

Elizalde is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the Screen Actors Guild and of the Makeup Artists and Hairstylists Union, Local 706. He is also a ‘Magician Member’ at the world famous Hollywood Magic Castle. Under Mike’s leadership, his company has created mind-bending prosthetic makeup and creature effects for such blockbuster films as X-Men: The Last Stand, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, Pacific Rim, and Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance.

Today, Spectral Motion is recognized not only as one of the leading special effects studios in the industry but also a leader in robotic systems including software control system design, fabrication, and installation. Spectral Motion is a frequent vendor to Walt Disney Imagineering making contributions in the areas of theme park rides, parades, and research and development. The company also develops robotic art installations that will be featured in the newly opened Broad Gallery in Los Angeles, California.