From red handkerchiefs to chocolate syrup, there’s more to the story of fake blood than you might guess.

If you’ve ever tried and failed to make a good batch of fake blood for your movie, you’re not alone. Filmmakers have struggled with this since the dawn of cinema, encountering even greater challenges once color film came on the scene. In this short video from Great Big Story, we get to learn the history of fake blood, as well as secrets of the numerous concoctions that special makeup artists (like the famous Dick Smith) used in their bloodiest films.

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