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sculptors
Sculptors for Madame Tussaud's wax museum add detail to the presidential candidates' heads  

Waxy buildup: Bush, Gore face off at Madame Tussaud's

LONDON, England (CNN) -- As the U.S. presidential hopefuls Al Gore and George Bush wax poetic on the campaign trail, there's a lot more at stake than simply who gets to move into the White House.

At Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum in London, sculptors are working at a feverish pitch to make sure both presidential candidates' likenesses are ready for the Tuesday election.

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They've been working for two months on each wax head, but come next week, there will only be room for one presidential-size head.

Sculptor Paul Bainbridge faced the task of making Gore look lifelike in wax.

"If he is successful, we get to go on and build the body underneath him," he said, "and if he isn't, he goes in the bin."

Bainbridge hopes Gore moves into the White House, but not necessarily for political reasons.

"I am hoping he does, because I get to build the body," he said.

Time-consuming process

sculpture
 
sculpture
One of these heads will roll on Election Day. The president-elect will receive a body and the other head will be discarded  

Presidential head-crafting starts with a clay sculpture that typically takes about 10 weeks. The sculpture is then molded in plaster, and wax is poured in.

"You end up with a wax head, a fiberglass body," sculptor Stephen Manfield said. "Then the various technicians start working on it. The eye people, the teeth people, then hair is inserted hair by hair and finally it is colored, the outfit put on and then its installed."

Visitors to the museum were divided over who should replace President Clinton.

"I would like to see the legacy of the Clinton administration continue, so I'd like to see Al Gore at Madame Tussaud's," one American said.

Another said she would prefer to encounter a Republican in wax.

"We expect we're going to see President Bush here next time," she said.



RELATED STORIES:
Election 2000 overview
October 23, 2000
Gore says GOP would roll back economic progress; Bush promises 'fiscally responsible plan'
November 2, 2000
Madame Tussaud's wax museum opens in Hong Kong
August 28, 2000
Showbuzz: Jackie Chan waxed?
May 8, 2000

RELATED SITES:
Madame Tussaud's
George W. Bush campaign
Gore-Lieberman campaign

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