Chances are that if you’ve been scared by a non-CGI monster in a recent horror movie, Javier Botet was the man behind the makeup. The Spanish actor has played some of the most unsettling creatures in recent horror movies, from The Crooked Man in “The Conjuring 2,” to the Hobo and Witch in “It,” to Slender Man in the eponymous 2018 thriller.
Botet is able to embody these characters because of his physical acting talents, as well as a condition called Marfan syndrome. The genetic disorder leaves individuals with exceptional height, a thin and overly flexible body, and long arms, legs, and fingers. Botet, who was diagnosed with Marfan syndrome at the age of six, grew to a height of 6’6″ but weighed just 120 pounds.
Botet, who grew up loving monsters and aliens, began acting after a teacher at a special effects workshop suggested that he would be perfect for such roles. “I didn’t realize, but I was born to perform,” Botet told the BBC.
Botet’s roles require him to wear heavy makeup prosthetics for long periods of time, but he never tires of the final result. “I see in the monitor this monster appearing — it’s beautiful,” he told the Hollywood Reporter. “And I think, ‘Yes! I am that creature!'”