“Wolfman” Howl Try-Outs, Featuring Rockers & Opera Singers

A. Quinton — Jan. 20th 2010

Joe Johnston, director of The Wolfman, had some interesting stories to tell in his recent interview with Boxoffice, including an account of how he deliberately modified the script to guarantee an R-rated edit. He also talks about the lengths they went to in order to capture the perfect howl for Lawrence Talbot’s beastly alter-ego. The vocal contributors included Gene Simmons and David Lee Roth!

We had opera singers come in and howl, we had animal impersonators. Gene Simmons and David Lee Roth were pretty near the end of the process. By then we knew what we were looking for, we were homing in on it. And their stuff became the most useful stuff that we did. Like I said, I don’t think they would recognize it after what we’ve done to it because we’ve digitally processed it and added cool overtones and all that stuff. We were basically just looking for a wolf howl you’d never heard before. What we realized is that everybody in the audience knows what a wolfman sounds like. Even if it’s from their imagination, it’s all pretty much the same thing. We just wanted our howl to be the best version of that howl. And I think we’ve come up with something that’s definitely spine-tingling, and at the same time it’s familiar enough that the audience is going to recognize it—it’s what they expect, with enhancements.

There’s a lot of good stuff in this interview, so have a read!