Michigan’s film tax credit swept stardust into the life of longtime Ann Arbor cosmetologist Elizabeth Colburn, who’s worked as head makeup artist on four movies filmed in-state. The jobs allowed her to buy health coverage as a member of IATSE, the stagehands union. Colburn’s also enjoyed challenges such as creating an artificial mole for the actor Enver Gjokaj, who played a younger version of Robert DeNiro’s character in Stone, scheduled for an October 8 release. “DeNiro’s personal [makeup] artist was very kind,” Colburn recalls. “He emailed me lots of pictures of DeNiro so I could see the location of [his real] mole.” She also made up the legendary Ann-Margret, dressed in Renaissance costume, for All’s Faire in Love. The movie still hasn’t been released, but Colburn cracks up as she recalls the star, in her voluminous gown, being wheeled out on a golf cart at the Michigan Renaissance Festival.

Colburn says flown-in Hollywood artists appear surprised at her skills, honed from more than two decades of making up nervous brides as well as celebrities like Jennifer Granholm and Eminem. She’s keeping her fingers crossed that the controversial incentive will be renewed when a new governor takes office in January. GOP nominee and Ann Arborite Rick Snyder opposes it; Democrat Virg Bernero has not yet taken a position.