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Legendary make-up artist Dick Smith dies

Los Angeles: Dick Smith, an Oscar-winning make-up artist, died at the age of 92. The news of his demise was announced by his protege, Rick Baker, yesterday via Twitter.

"The master is gone. My friend and mentor Dick Smith is no longer with us. The world will not be the same," Baker tweeted. Smith is survived by wife Jocelyn De Rosa and two children.

Dick Smith was a pioneer in his field. His list of credits included 'The Godfather', 'The Exorcist', 'Amadeus' and 'Taxi Driver'. He realistically transformed 40-year-old F Murray Abraham into 80-year-old Antonio Salieri on 'Amadeus' and won an Oscar in 1985 for the work.

He also pioneered the use of foam latex, using small sections to free up the movement of an actor's face. Smith started his career in television industry and became head of make-up department at NBC in 1945. He came to prominence with his work in Francis Ford Coppola's "The Godfather" in 1972.

Smith worked with Marlon Brando and changed the actor's looks completely. He spent an hour and a half before each scene, adding jowls, age spots and grey hair to create the character Vito Corleone. Smith received an honorary Oscar in 2011. In January, Smith received the Makeup Artists Lifetime Achievement Award at the Makeup Artists and Hair Stylist Guild Awards.

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