It had to happen eventually! As reported in early November by Deadline Hollywood, John Landis’s An American Werewolf in London – generally considered to be the gold standard of werewolf movies – is now officially set to get a remake. Things are still in the paperwork phase, but one thing’s for sure: Landis’s son Max will write and direct.
Max Landis is a filmmaker, writer, and producer in his own right, and he’s already taken a swing at a small but crucial part of An American Werewolf in London. In 2015 he and Homemade Movies collaborated on a deliberately shoe-string-budget shot-for-shot remake of the famous AWIL transformation scene.
I have mixed feeling about this. Personal issues aside (I’ve never interacted with Max Landis but he was a real dick to some friends of mine), I didn’t much like American Ultra or Chronicle, both of which Landis wrote. But more recently, he’s been involved in two small screen adaptations of works I really enjoy – the Douglas Adams Dirk Gently books, for which he wrote a BBC America / Netflix series, and Kris Straub’s Candle Cove / Ichor Falls stories, which he executive-produced as Channel Zero for Syfy. I haven’t seen those adaptations yet, but they’ve both received favourable reviews, and it has to mean something that this AWIL remake is the third thing in a row he’s involved with that I also happen to be super into.
An American Werewolf in London is a film that doesn’t need a remake, but then, what film really does? And if someone’s going to adapt AWIL, let it be someone who has a familial connection to the original’s legacy. As with so many other nascent werewolf films, I’ll keep my expectations low and my hopes high.