The evil T-1000 in “Terminator 2” was a robot that could reduce itself to a liquid metal state and seep through cracks or morph its hands into stabbing weapons. Although achieved partly through state-of-the-art CGI, the T-1000 was practical in many scenes, and Robert Patrick had to be painted entirely silver to achieve the desired effect. Jeff Dawn knew of a brand of aerosol, spray-on chrome that he felt would work well to make his actor the right shade of shiny. Dawn admitted that, because there was no explicit label instructing him not to spray the toxic flocking on a person’s face, he felt free to do so. Years later, he realized how reckless he was:
“This is back in the days when you kind of look at the can and there’s no major skull and crossbones on it. So you think, ‘This is okay to spray on someone’s face.’ Nowadays it’s a whole different ballgame when it comes to safety and safety data sheets and all that. But back then, you’d smell it and go, ‘It’s extremely flammable, and there’s some smoke skull and crossbones down here, but I think we’ll be okay.'”
Hence, the development of protective layers of paint-proof glue applied to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s face several years later. According to Dawn, the process to get Schwarzenegger in makeup took four hours, a process that was extended by the fact that the actor refused to shave his head and eyebrows. Had he allowed himself to be bald, the makeup may have taken a full hour less.