“Werewolf in the Night” released a week ago on Disney+ and brought the character of Jack Russell, played by Gael García Bernal, to the MCU.
In the plot, Jack is revealed to be a lycanthrope, transforming into a werewolf in a scene completely unlike anything Marvel fans have seen before.
Since most of the specials are black and white, fans never see Jack’s werewolf form in color.
However, concept art shared by artist Billy Christian provides a more detailed look at the monster’s design.
“’Werewolf in the Night’. My illustration for the new Marvel Studios Halloween special. This art was used as a style guide. I didn’t expect them to do the whole movie in black and white.”
Werewolf at night.
My illustration for the new Marvel Studios Halloween Special. This illustration will be used as a style guide.
I didn’t expect them to do the whole movie in black and white.
If you are interested, give it a try! #WerewolfByNight #Marvel pic.twitter.com/BnhSKXrg5A
— Billy Christian (@bill_creative) October 13, 2022
In an interview with Fandom, director Michael Giacchino said the team opted for practical effects over visual effects, from certain character costumes to sets.
“We did absolutely everything on set and used practical effects as much as possible. From the start, I didn’t want this project to be a green or blue screen festival. I wanted real sets, real makeup and real costumes.
“All the scenarios are real, everything you see is real. It’s kind of hard to believe the fact of the monsters and all, but if we made the environment real, not just for the viewer but for the actors themselves , I thought we would have a chance to make this look like something that might have happened, so whatever practical effect we could do, we did.
One of the special’s most iconic scenes – that of Jack Russell (Gael Garcia Bernal) transforming into a werewolf – was also virtually entirely filmed, rather than digitally created.
“The werewolf transformation scene is on our cameras. We really tried to do everything we could. So it was just a fun exercise in old school cinema,” Giacchino concluded.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the special garnered incredible 100% approval.
So far, only seven reviews have been published and all of them are positive.
Among the comments, journalists praised how the attraction managed to pay homage to horror classics in cinematic history and were surprised at how well Marvel Studios excelled in a genre completely different from its main productions.
“Delicious retro horror stylings and a gripping pair of tracks successfully deflect, at least for a time, some of the MCU’s more conventional traits.” – Bloody disgusting.
“Using elements of dark comedy, lighthearted romance and friendship, ‘Werewolf in the Night’ is able to balance fun and fear.” – IndieWire.
“The film also turns out to be a perfectly realized horror tale that exists and fits into the MCU as a whole. After several failed attempts, it seems that the MCU has finally found a suitable Cryptkeeper with director Michael Giacchino. WGTC.
“‘Werewolf in the Night’ is MCU’s least entry into the MCU since, way before the MCU even existed. That’s a good thing…It’s a complete love letter to all monster movies and of horror.–io9.
“I love how Michael Giacchino pays homage to the monster movies of yesteryear – going so far as to have cigarette burns in the corner, like a 35MM film print! – but also introduces horror to the MCU of in a compelling new way.– VitalThrills.
“’Werewolf in the Night’ is perfection and there is no way to overstate it. For those in the audience who grew up on classic Universal horror, this special is for you. It is the embodiment of a deep love for monsters. – But why is that? The Geek community.
Watch the trailer:
Gael Garcia Bernal (“Tempo”) and Laura Donnelly (“The Nevers”) will star in the production.
“Werewolf by Night” is the alter-ego of two different Marvel characters. The first is Jack Russell in 1970, and more recently a new character named Jack Gomez.
Jack Russell is a descendant of the mystically altered offshoot of humans known as the Lycanthropes. During the night of the full moon and the two nights around it, he is forced to transform into a werewolf, a large and powerful form that is a hybrid of human and wolf, and loses his human intellect. Through a series of events, he is also able to voluntarily mutate outside of the full moon, at which time he retains control.
It’s worth remembering that, in issue 32 of Werewolf by Night, we had the first appearance of the “Moon Knight”, a Marvel character who will star in his own Marvel series on Disney+.
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