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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

U.S. Air Force pilot is "face" of Decepticons in TRANSFORMERS

In this summer's blockbuster movie Transformers, there is a character called "Mustache Man" in the credits. He's a holographic projection that the Decepticons use in their vehicular modes to make it look like they've got a human operator. We first see him in Blackout's cockpit during the initial attack on the base in Qatar, and then later wearing a police uniform inside Barricade and then sitting in Starscream's cockpit. We never actually see Mustache Man speak, but he's got an amazing on-screen presence that really conveys the personality and menace of the Decepticons.

Well, according to the Albuquerque Tribune in a story from about a month ago it turns out that this earthly face of the Decepticons is a real-life helicopter pilot instructor in the United States Air Force. Maj. Brian Reece has been in the military since age 17, and has served in Iraq and Afghanistan several times. And then about a year ago...

...he was chatting with director Michael Bay on the "Transformers" set at Holloman Air Force Base near Alamogordo. Bay, who was using Kirtland helicopters in background shots for the movie, was lamenting over not having cast actors for some of project's smaller roles.

"He was talking about it," Reece said, "and one of my guys walked by singing that stupid `Team America' song. I thought, `You've got to be kidding me. You're gonna walk by singing that song?'

"So I was like . . ."

Reese made what he calls "one of those death glances" — an eyes-narrowed, chin-tightened, don't-tread-on-me stare that suggests impending doom to its recipients.

Upon seeing this, something in the director's brain apparently clicked. Quicker than you can say "Action!" — or in this case, "You've got kind of a piercing stare" — Reece had a role.

"Michael wasn't looking for it," said Ian Bryce, one of the film's producers. "It happens. Sometimes you meet people and you start talking about the movie and suddenly the light bulb goes off. Michael's very good at thinking like that."

Minutes later, Reece found himself in the helicopters he'd been sent to help fly — this time as an actor with a fake mustache fixed above his lip.

Very cool! The article also talks about how Reece's wicked stare made a serious impression on Steven Spielberg.

Here's hoping that we'll see Brian Reece as the front-man for those diabolical 'Cons again in future installments of the Transformers movie franchise!

EDIT 9:39 a.m. EST: Here's the scene from Transformers where Frenzy summons the Decepticons, featuring two apperances by Reece as the Mustache Man:

I'll also say this: I really dig that Decepticon theme music, with its unearthly chanting.


Suz said...

Neat bit about this guy. I love it when ordinary people get their 15-minutes of fame and treat it exactly like it is: 15 minutes. Then they go back to their normal lives.

When are we going to get the score? Darn it!