Found-footage werewolf thriller ‘Wer’ punted to home video

July 16, 2014 by in Film, Television & Music

Via Bloody Disgusting comes the news that ‘enormous man who might be a monster, or is the monster us???‘ film Wer won’t be getting a theatrical release. Universal Home Entertainment is pushing William Brent Bell and Matthew Peterman’s found footage thriller to home video on September 23rd, with an earlier digital release to be announced soon. Disappointing, but given the performance of the duo’s previous film, The Devil Inside, sort of understandable. Oh well, at least I can watch it at home sooner!

Ernest Mathijs analyzes feminism, identity & lycanthropy in “John Fawcett’s Ginger Snaps”

July 15, 2014 by in Books & Comics, Film, Television & Music

John Fawcett's Ginger SnapsFriend of the site Tim McGregor (who astute readers may remember as the author who volunteered his book Bad Wolf for a Worst Werewolf Books post in 2011) recently shared with me the existence of John Fawcett’s Ginger Snaps, an ebook by UBC Film Studies Professor Ernest Mathijs. The book is “based on the author’s privileged access to most of its cast and crew and to its enthusiasts around the world”, and examines “themes of genre, feminism, identity, and adolescent belonging”. Tim says it’s “pretty insightful but like all academic lit, it gets a bit lofty and stretches its theories”. If you’re looking for something to read in anticipation of the Scream Factory Collector’s Edition re-release of Ginger Snaps next week, check it out!

Harry Potter’s “Fenrir Greyback” actor Dave Legeno passes away

July 14, 2014 by in Film, Television & Music

Dave Legeno

Sad news from over the weekend – actor, MMA fighter and “Big Friendly GentlemanDave Legeno has passed away from heat stroke at the age of 50. His body was discovered Friday by hikers in a remote section of Death Valley, where it appears he had been hiking alone in temperatures that peaked around 101° F (39° C). Legeno was most widely known for playing infamous werewolf Fenrir Greyback in the Harry Potter films.

Despite his indimidating appearance Legeno had a reputation for being gentle and sweet. It’s terrible when anyone dies, but something about this photo tribute from Harry Potter co-star Tom Felton has got me feeling particularly sad and quiet. Condolences to his family, his friends, and the fans who loved the characters he portrayed.

The art of Kevin Cornell

July 12, 2014 by in Artwork & Creative

I’ve been employed in the web development world since 2005, and tinkering with HTML as far back as 1997. That’s the same year A List Apart was founded, and the online magazine “for people who make web sites” has been on my regular reading list ever since. The articles are always well-written and interesting, but a big draw for me (no pun intended) are the accompanying illustrations by Kevin Cornell. His organic style expresses motion and character so well! I’m pretty sure Kevin doesn’t know about Draw A Werewolf Day, but I thought it would be fun to share a few recent werewolf drawings from his stream. I encourage you to check out his other work, too, including all these wonderful-looking books. Enjoy!

kevin-cornell-werewolf-1 kevin-cornell-werewolf-2 kevin-cornell-werewolf-3

Full Moon Features: Game of Werewolves

July 11, 2014 by in Film, Television & Music, Full Moon Features, Reviews

Game of WerewolvesEver since I first heard about it, I’ve wanted to see the 2011 Spanish horror/comedy Game of Werewolves, but outside of a few festival screenings it hasn’t received a Stateside release. Sadly, that extends to home video as well, but a couple months back I learned that the Blu-ray put out in the U.K. (under the title Attack of the Werewolves) is region-free, so I went ahead and ordered it. Now that I’ve finally gotten to see the film for myself, I know what all the fuss was about and can be doubly sad that it isn’t readily available here.

Also known as Lobos de Arga in the original Spanish, Game of Werewolves follows Tomás (Gorka Otxoa), an obscure writer with one unsuccessful novel to his name, back to his family’s ancestral home in the remote village of Arga, which he hasn’t seen in some 15 years. Hoping the experience will inspire his second book, which he is optimistically calling Return to My Roots, Tomás has also been invited to be the guest of honor at a special ceremony, which doesn’t ring any alarm bells because he doesn’t realize he’s in a monster movie. Then again, writer/director Juan Martínez Moreno doesn’t tip his hand for a good long while, preferring to play up the comedy angle as Tomás reunites with his childhood friend, merry prankster Calisto (Carlos Areces), is roughly manhandled by his uncle, town mayor and de facto priest Evaristo (Manuel Manquiña), and plays unwilling host to his deadbeat publisher Mario (Secun de la Rosa), who has the misfortune to be around when the villagers show their true colors.

As the film’s prologue illustrates, Arga has been living under a 100-year-old curse brought upon them by Tomás’s great-grandmother, a less-than noble woman who forcibly took a gypsy knife thrower as a lover and then had him and all of his kin put to death. Ten years later, the son that resulted from their union became a wolf and began terrorizing the town’s inhabitants until such time as the curse could be lifted. That’s where Tomás is supposed to come in, but before he can be sacrificed to the beast (which looks fantastic, by the way), he and Mario are rescued by Calisto, who hides them from the villagers. He also raises the specter of the second, even worse curse that will befall them should they fail to fulfill the terms of the first. (I’ll give you a hint: it involves a whole lot more werewolves, which also look fantastic.)

On the horror end of the spectrum, Game of Werewolves features a fair amount of bloodletting, including a nifty beheading, and vicious werewolf attacks galore. (Those are more action-oriented than scary, though.) And on the comedy side, the sequence where Calisto and Mario chop off one of Tomás’s pinkies, then the other in an effort to head off the curse at the pass is a real hoot. Tomás also has an adorable little dog named Vito that gets up to a lot of mischief and an adorable little grandmother named Rosa (Mabel Rivera) who rides to the rescue at a very opportune moment. That only earns them the briefest of reprieves, though, because whatever game the werewolves of Arga play, it’s definitely for keeps.

The werewolves of “The Order: 1886″ are smart, dangerous & not shy about transforming

July 10, 2014 by in Gaming & Collectibles

The Order: 1886 Werewolf

The Order: 1886 is a single-player action game from Ready At Dawn, in development since 2010 and due out early next year as a PlayStation 4 exclusive. It takes place in an alternate history London, and follows an order of knights who represent the first line of defence in a centuries-old war between mankind and the werewolf-like Half-Breeds.

People have been hungry for details about this game since it was first announced. Ready At Dawn have earned some high expectations due in part to their acclaimed God of War games, and many gamers (if the YouTube comment threads are to be believed) are expecting The Order: 1886 to be a showpiece for the PS4 – but I’m not Ben Kuchera and this isn’t an analysis of the game marketplace. I’m here to get hyped about the werewolves! Check out this trailer (more of a featurette really) showing the lengths Ready At Dawn have gone in creating the Half-Breed antagonists.

I like the creature design a lot, but what I love is the attention that went into making the Half-Breeds intelligent and biologically plausible. Good characterization is important in any story-telling medium, so it was nice to hear art director Nathan Phail-Liff’s comment about avoiding “transformation from specific guy to generic scary creature”. I’m very impressed by the technical effort put into achieving seamless transformations, too – changing the character geometry, rigging and textures on the fly without any cuts away to “cheat” is obviously no easy feat.  I don’t know if I’m in the market for a PlayStation 4, but if one does come my way, I know which game I’m picking up first!

DC wolfs out Batman and Superman for October

July 9, 2014 by in Uncategorized

DC Comics is running a monster-themed variant cover for many of its titles this October, and the cover of BATMAN/SUPERMAN #15 features the two superheroes fully wolfed outJon Bogdanove and Alex Sinclair got me interested in two characters I haven’t thought about since the Baman Piderman Kickstarter in May. Supes, control those fur gauntlets, man!

Batman/Superman Monsters Variant

There are some more great covers on Newsarama but this cover is the only one to feature werewolves. Thanks to Lauren for bringing this to my attention!

“Cycle of the Werewolf” Illustrator Wrightson Hospitalized

July 8, 2014 by in Artwork & Creative, Books & Comics, Pop Culture

Bernie Wrightson - Cycle of the WerewolfAs reported by Bleeding Cool, legendary comic artist and illustrator Bernie Wrightson was hospitalized today after suffering “a series of small strokes”. According to his wife, his cognition and his spirits are good, although he’ll likely remain in the hospital for tests and possible surgery.

Most of Wrightson’s fans probably know his work from Swamp Thing or Heavy Metal, but my introduction to his atmospheric “in the moment” style came when I first checked out a ragged library copy of Stephen King’s Cycle of the Werewolf. Wrightson’s twelve illustrations of the lives and (gory) deaths of the people of Tarker’s Mills left an indelible mark on me as a young werewolf fan. He’s a legend and I wish him a full and speedy recovery.

Happy Canada Day

July 1, 2014 by in Film, Television & Music

My fellow Canadians, today is our day to go out and have some polite, not-too-loud fun in honour of our country’s 147th birthday. But first, enjoy this wonderful VHS artifact unearthed by Lycanthropology 101: A Canadian Werewolf In Hollywood a “Comedy Classic Short” by Canadian (duh) filmmaker Bryan Michael Stoller.

Win a “Wolf-Girls” prize package from Hic Dragones

June 22, 2014 by in Administration, Books & Comics

Wolf-Girls Prize PackWant to win some free books? Of course you do! Enter this giveaway from publisher Hic Dragones and you could win paperback copies of The Tattooed Wolf by K. Bannerman, Blood and Water by Beth Daley, and werewolf short story anthology Wolf-Girls, plus a Wolf-Girls tote bag in which to store your winnings. The competition closes on June 30th, and international entries are welcome, so unless you are scared of books or winning, you have no excuse to not enter.

Wolf-Girls giveaway

Did You Know? “Wolf-Girls” contains my short story The Librarian, which is about werewolf Alexis, a bad person who tries very hard to reform herself. Does she succeed? This sketch by Tandye of Alexis in both her forms contains a clue (hint: the clue is red, and is blood).

Tandye Rowe Librarian sketch