What did the real characters in ‘Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood’ look like?


Director Quentin Tarantino certainly assembled a recognizable cast for his acclaimed ninth film, “Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood,” featuring Hollywood heavyweights Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie and Dakota Fanning. But are they still recognizable when transformed into their real-life counterparts?

From Robbie’s Sharon Tate to Mike Moh’s Bruce Lee, “Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood” tasked its hair, makeup and wardrobe teams with capturing the essences of Hollywood icons, world-renowned action heroes and infamous criminals. Some (Robbie) required little adjustments, while others (Fanning) underwent more significant changes to re-create the film’s 1969 vibe.

For the record:

1:49 p.m. July 30, 2019A previous version of this article called actor Steve McQueen an Oscar winner. He was nominated for an Oscar but never won.

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Here’s a rundown of the film’s key players and their Hollywood doppelgangers.

Sharon Tate, played by Margot Robbie


The platinum blond Aussie actress was already a near-perfect lookalike when she landed the rare opportunity to portray Tate, whose family has been protective of her legacy since her murder in 1969. A middle part in her hair, a turtle neck and some go-go boots effectively complete Robbie’s transformation into the late actress.

James Stacy, played by Timothy Olyphant

A shaggier hairstyle and bushier eyebrows seem to be the only traits separating late western star Stacy from his onscreen counterpart Olyphant. The “Santa Clarita Diet” alum sports a tawny leather jacket and brimmed hat in the film to match Stacy’s cowboy look.

Jay Sebring, played by Emile Hirsch

Hirsch channels famed celebrity hairstylist Sebring onscreen with a quaffed ‘do and simple button-up. At 35, the “Into the Wild” star is also close to the age at which Sebring died in the Tate murders.

Bruce Lee, played by Mike Moh


Stuntman and martial artist Moh emerges as an easy match for Hollywood action icon Lee. The “Empire” actor makes the most of his small role in the film, facing off against Pitt’s Cliff Booth and helping Robbie’s Tate with her martial-arts skills.

Steve McQueen, played by Damian Lewis

Lewis shares a couple of features with the real “King of Cool,” including his trademark blue eyes. McQueen was known for his Hollywood dreamboat looks and devil-may-care attitude.

Charles Manson, played by Damon Herriman

Aussie actor Herriman’s transformation into one of the most infamous criminals of all time proved a little more dramatic than some of his costars’. The “Justified” alum traded his chopped red hair, clean-shaven face and pearly teeth for Manson’s scraggly brown mane, scruffy beard and gap-toothed smile. Herriman is also set to portray the cult leader in the second season of Netflix’s “Mindhunter.”

Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme, played by Dakota Fanning


Fanning’s turn as one of Manson’s young followers required a significant makeover. In addition to coloring her bleached blond hair auburn, her skin also bears a rosier tint and extra freckles to mimic a gingery, sun-kissed Fromme.

Tex Watson, played by Austin Butler

Another blond bites the dust. Butler also ditched his golden locks to match the near-black hair of Manson “family” member Watson. The real convicted murderer sported a chopped cut and thick eyebrows in the late 1960s.

‘Flower Girl’ (maybe Linda Kasabian), played by Maya Hawke

“Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood” bills Hawke as “Flower Girl,” a potential reference to another of Manson’s disciples. The “Stranger Things” breakout and daughter of longtime Tarantino collaborator Uma Thurman shares Kasabian’s short, light-brown hair and freckled nose.

Katie (maybe Patricia Krenwinkel), played by Madisen Beaty


Beaty plays Katie, a possible pseudonym for Manson family member Krenwinkel. Like Krenwinkel, the “Fosters” actress possesses light blue eyes and thick hair — though hers is a natural strawberry blond, while Krenwinkel is a brunet.

Susan Atkins, played by Mikey Madison

Madison rounds out the portrayals of the convicted murderers as Sadie, a.k.a. Atkins. The “Better Things” actress is a close match for Atkins, with dark brown eyes and long hair.

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July 26, 2019