"There's probably 10 top wigmakers," Victoria Wood tells me. "That covers Italy, Germany, England, France, the U.S., and Japan. I would like to think that I'm in the top 10 or 15." We are in Wood's modest home in Long Beach, California. Outside sits a Clip In Toyota Avalon whose license plate reads, WIGMAKR. Wood made the wigs Brazilian Virgin Hair for Will Ferrell and Jon Heder in Blades of Glory, Kevin Spacey in American Beauty, and Barbra Streisand in Meet the Fockers. Angelina Jolie wore her wigs in Girl Interrupted; Dakota Fanning wore them in The Secret Life of Bees. She recently did the wigs for the remake of Total Recall. Wood has a fine-boned face and dark blond hair. In her mid-50s, she has a teenaged son and a husband -- her fourth -- whom she met at church. "I wanted to be a make-up artist in film. I didn't know God had wigmaking," she says. Once she learned God did have wigmaking, she never looked back: she has been Flip In Synthetic Hair ventilating -- the industry term -- for 32 years, mostly for film and Broadway shows. Since then, Wood has bought most of her hair from Bracha and Dirks. Nearly all of their hair is virgin, she says, and of extremely good quality. Wood leads me to a small workshop in the back. The room is cluttered with cabinets, headshots, wigs on wig blocks bound in white canvas. I note a book called, simply, Dreads. If you know your hair will grow back -- or be covered with someone else's beautiful hair -- are you truly giving up everything? Wood shows me a needle with a tiny barb like a fishhook at one end. "You're not a wigmaker if you can't tie a knot. People say, 'I want to work with you.' I say, 'Make a clean knot and a fast knot, or you're of no value to me.'" She pokes the barbed needle through a piece of net, snags the single strand of hair, loops it, pulls it back through the net, twists it, captures the strand, again pulls it back through the net, and secures the knot. Or something like that: she tries to slow it down but can't. At speed, she'll make a knot in half a second. If a Broadway show succeeds, a wig must endure multiple wearings; over time, single knots can loosen, so Wood double-knots each strand. She charges a minimum of $3,000 per theatrical wig and twice that amount for film wigs, but film is a business that's used to paying for maximum flexibility. "They want to be able to say, 'We had this very expensive virgin blond hair' -- my God, this happened! -- 'but we think she would look better with dark hair.' So they dye the hair dark."