Ain't It Cool News (
Movie News

The Behind the Scenes Pic of the Day has to warn people. It has to make them believe!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with today’s Behind the Scenes Pic!

There’s been a long standing feud in the horror geek world. This Civil War has dominated many discussions since the early ‘80s and has broken many happy families, pitted brother against brother and has caused much misery.

Of course I’m talking about the eternal question: What is a better werewolf movie, The Howling or An American Werewolf In London? While this war compiles casualties I stand on the sidelines pleading for both sides to see reason. Why can’t we all get along? Why can’t we agree that they’re both good movies with their own unique tone and individual awesomeness?

Joe Dante’s The Howling has a great transformation that is much different from An American Werewolf In London’s. Rob Bottin and Rick Baker shouldn’t be thrown into the Thunderdome against each other, they should be celebrated as geniuses in their field.

The Howling has a grit to it that is incredible, a creepy fucked up tone that Joe Dante hasn’t ever repeated. The way Dee Wallace delivers the final moments creeps me out just thinking back on it.

So, let’s put aside old grudged and show some love for the below shot, which has Joe Dante posing with his slate on the set of The Howling.

Click for a slightly bigger version!



Tomorrow’s Behind the Scenes Pic features one of cinema’s iconic beauties with one of cinema’s most iconic directors/leading men.

Follow Me On Twitter

Readers Talkback
comments powered by Disqus
    + Expand All
  • April 8, 2011, 5:48 p.m. CST


    by MainMan2001

  • April 8, 2011, 5:53 p.m. CST

    Working his own slate. Nice.

    by WriteForTheEdit

    I had a chance to meet Joe D. at a Dragon Con many, many years ago. Totally down-to-earth, friendly guy. This guy should be doing MUCH more work than he seems to be getting. (Even though "Explorers" was a pretty huge misfire.)

  • April 8, 2011, 5:55 p.m. CST

    Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf

    by Huey_Freemans_afro

    I just had to throw that out there while I'm still early on this talkback.

  • April 8, 2011, 5:56 p.m. CST


    by ShogunMaster

    A lot of build up for a rather meh picture. Was hoping there'd be a wolf in the pic at least..

  • is like arguing over "Who's sexier, Jessica Alba or Jessica Biel?" You just can't fault either answer, even if you disagree a bit.

  • April 8, 2011, 6:16 p.m. CST

    The greatest gift THE HOWLING gave us

    by kermit_the_fraud

    Dee Wallace turning into an Ewok. Yub to the fuckin' yub.

  • April 8, 2011, 6:21 p.m. CST

    Civil war? Really?

    by whiskey_dick

    Some pop culture debates are obvious. Wars vs.Trek, Kirk vs. Picard, Beatles vs. Elvis, etc. I'm a huge American Werewolf fan, though younger than the movie itself, and I can't honestly say I've ever heard AAWiL sent up against The Howling specifically. Is this really an existing rivalry?

  • April 8, 2011, 6:28 p.m. CST

    Met Joe Dante

    by kwisatzhaderach

    at the Edinburgh Film Festival a couple of years ago, got him to sign my Gremlins and Innerspace DVDs. One of the coolest, most passionate filmmakers around. It's a sad indictment of Hollywood that he isn't given more work. The Howling, Twilight Zone The Movie, Gremlins, Explorers, Innerspace, The 'Burbs. Gremlins 2 and Matinee are all crazy genre flicks, and have an individualistic directorial stamp upon them. <p> What are the unique directorial stamps on JJ Abrams' movies? That's right. There aren't any. Bland shit.

  • April 8, 2011, 6:30 p.m. CST

    It certainly was a rivalry when I was in middle school...

    by ufoclub1977

    And these both were just coming out of cable and video (Beta!) Personally I thought the actual monster form was more interesting, creative, and horrific in The Howling... and the first reveal of that werewolf is a great scene (in the doc lab, while the reporter is on the phone). But American Werewolf was great! It has the most original horror mood. I can't quite put my finger on it. Both retro and completely contemporary for it's time. Bottin had the freedom to have his transformation and monster filmed and lit exactly as he wanted. Baker didn't, and he hated the way his stuff was lit and shot.

  • April 8, 2011, 6:30 p.m. CST

    Since you're asking

    by shran

    An American Werewolf in London. Hands down. Without question. On all levels.

  • April 8, 2011, 6:42 p.m. CST


    by Ace of Wands

    there is no controversey; this is just Quint attempting to justify the vomit that he calls writing which is really nothing more than him contorting himself to make a BTS pic seem more interesting than it fucking is. You see he has to churn out a few words- ill conceived and ill considered quite often- to show that he has any fucking interest at all in the daily (sometimes) chore that he has created for himself with this BTS BS; if he doesn't pen SOMETHING then my guess is that the byline could be taken over by whoever is flavour of the month (Nordling, NO!!!). Personally I think- and I have said this before ( ad nauseam, I'm sure)- that Quints AMAD/AMAW column was much better because he actually seemed to take care over his words, maybe because in considering a WHOLE movie there was more to bite at. Who knows; what I do know is that, aside from a FEW great BTS pictures, this column sucks.

  • April 8, 2011, 6:44 p.m. CST

    The 'Burbs was great. Yeah, I said it.

    by Mennen

  • April 8, 2011, 6:48 p.m. CST


    by BeanGrud

    eee heee

  • April 8, 2011, 6:53 p.m. CST

    mennen: Hell, yes.

    by WriteForTheEdit

  • April 8, 2011, 6:55 p.m. CST

    PAWS DOWN...The Howling is...


    ...just as "effect"ive, has just enough realism vs. supernatural, AND is CREEPIER & SCARIER

  • April 8, 2011, 7:07 p.m. CST

    I believe Sunday is the 30th anniversary

    by disfigurehead

    American Werewolf and The Howling are totally different. I love them both.

  • April 8, 2011, 7:32 p.m. CST

    The Howling was the first real book i ever read.

    by Spikey

    Id forgotten about my love of Gary Brandner. Must have been about 83 or so and i saw the film shortly afterwards. Always loved both films equally and thought it was forgotten about. I suppose the sequels didnt help its case much.

  • April 8, 2011, 8:15 p.m. CST

    I thought that old wound had healed, Quint.

    by JumpinJehosaphat

    You sumbitch... you had to go and rip it back open, didn't you? DIDN'T YOU?!

  • April 8, 2011, 8:28 p.m. CST

    wow, i miss the great arguments i had as a kid

    by paulloch

    we dont have them anymore. kirk .vs picard marvel vs dc brady vs. partridge addams vs munsters ginger vs maryann sonic vs mario plus hundreds others. what do kids have today really, icarly vs hannah ugh? life was so much better when we all watched, listened, read and experienced the same stuff, so we can argue over it. the beatles vs. elvis tarantino monologue doesn't apply anymore to our fractured society. (yes, I know teenagers who couldn't name an elvis song and think the beatles suck)

  • April 8, 2011, 8:41 p.m. CST

    Which one had the worst sequel though?

    by JediRob

    American Werewolf in Paris, or Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf? The notion of watching either one again to find out makes me shudder.

  • April 8, 2011, 9:03 p.m. CST

    The Howling sucks

    by Nasty In The Pasty

    I've given it two shots (once about a decade ago, the second time last year), and both times the movie severely underwhelmed me. Not scary, not funny, and while Rob Bottin's transformation effects are well-done, it bugs the SHIT out of me that that girl just stands there and watches as Robert Picardo mutates into a slavering man-beast for like FIVE MINUTES without attempting to escape. American Werewolf holds up (some atrocious song choices aside), but The Howling is weak sauce.

  • April 8, 2011, 9:35 p.m. CST

    Teen Wolf

    by lv_426

    Just kidding. I'm going to have to nominate Dog Soldiers as my favorite werewolf flick.

  • April 8, 2011, 9:38 p.m. CST

    The Company of Wolves

    by lv_426

    deserves a nod too. That one was pretty darn good as well.

  • April 8, 2011, 9:50 p.m. CST

    The Company of Wolves

    by lv_426

    Another awesome werewolf film from the 80's.

  • April 8, 2011, 9:58 p.m. CST

    The Burbs is awesome

    by slone13

    End of story.

  • April 8, 2011, 10:03 p.m. CST

    Burbs fan here as well

    by lv_426

    I thought it was a lot of fun. How come Joe Dante doesn't direct much anymore? If anything, Spielberg should give him a call and the two of them figure out how to do a Gremlins 3. 3D Gremlins, as long as it is mostly puppets and animatronic effects and not CGI'd to hell.

  • April 8, 2011, 10:32 p.m. CST

    I wanna kill / everyone / Satan is good / Satan is my pal

    by Nasty In The Pasty

  • April 9, 2011, 12:05 a.m. CST

    Rick Baker/Rob Bottin

    by Munro Kelly

    Rob started his career as a assistant to Rick Baker, he worked on King Kong and the Star Wars cantina creatures. Rob also played one of the famous band members, he's the tallest one at 6' 5". Joe Dante approached Baker for the Howling but was committed to Landis' film. He recommended Bottin, who already did work on Dante's Piranha. Rick Baker and Dick Smith were the automatic go to guys for make up fx , at the time, Baker assisted Smith on the Exorcist, where they first experimented with air bladders under the latex. Rick Baker has a consultant credit on the Howling, where he suggested the air bladders and hydraulics to elongate the face. The Howling hit the theaters first in 81 and Baker admitted that Landis was highly upset with him helping with their transformation scene.

  • April 9, 2011, 1:15 a.m. CST

    Nobody seems to know what the fuck happened to Bottin??

    by spidar40

    ...all these people on these boards and people in the industry.... ...and nobody's talking...WTF!

  • April 9, 2011, 5:01 a.m. CST

    Has anyone read Gary Brandner's novel, 'The Howling'?

    by BiggusDickus

    ...because it pisses all over the fucking travesty of a movie they 'adapted' from it. 'An American Werewolf In London' wins it for me every time for two reasons: Jenny Agutter.

  • April 9, 2011, 8:16 a.m. CST

    jedirob, Howling II was better than American Werewolf in Paris...

    by Shut the Fuck up Donny

    Why?.. 1 - Howling II had Christopher Lee. 2 - Howling II had a midget with exploding eyes. 3 - Howling II had no problem showing the same scene of Sybil Danning showing her tits over and over again during the credits.

  • April 9, 2011, 8:27 a.m. CST

    Silver bullets my ass...Blam, and the A-1 Steak Sauce guy

    by Grammaton Cleric Binks

    buys it. Howling wins.

  • April 9, 2011, 1:24 p.m. CST


    by Munro Kelly

    When comparing the two werewolf movies, I think The Howling should get some slack. The Howling only cost 1 million and Werewolf cost 10. For a fraction of the budget, The Howling's transformation holds up well to Werewolf's.

  • April 10, 2011, 12:25 p.m. CST

    Amazing how well practical effects hold up...

    by SK229

    and are rarely surpassed by the same thing done digitally. I'm not against CGI, in fact I feel the same way when it's done well... I guess it's so much more ubiquitous than practical ever was in mainstream movies that we've become so accustomed to looking at it and seeing the seams. We see the same thing done many, many times with CG, large scale destruction or armies being just two examples. But here's something I find interesting... many people will point to The Phantom Menace or LOTR and say, "you fucking idiots, those were models, that was like x% practical and you didn't even notice it, and you're here saying it's bad digital effects." How is this an argument? What the bad effect in that case really means is that it was a bad combination of practical and CGI. I'd almost never fault the model, some of those 'big-atures' in LOTR were INSANELY detailed and the scale impressive. No, it's the the fucking piece-of-shit digital colorization/sizing/grain/atmospheric effects applied OVER the model that start making it look like a digital matte painting with no dimension. Also to blame in some cases are the ridiculous shots careening around said model that take you out of the movie. Anyway, it seems like using digital effects to better blend in models and other practical effects or hide the seams should be very simple and a no-brainer, but when the fuck have they not gone overboard with it? To the point where a practical effect winds up looking digital. Ok... pondering over.

  • April 10, 2011, 3:39 p.m. CST

    Re: BUDGET

    by spidar40

    What that kid (Bottin) could do with some bubble gum and party balloons far exceeded most anything then. He had a great signature style and some awesome people in his corner. ( Miles Teves - to name but one.) I wish he would return to the industry. He was one of the ''new rockstars'' of makeup FX. I miss him.

  • April 10, 2011, 5:26 p.m. CST

    Holy shit...Miles Teves is great!

    by ufoclub1977

    What great work that guy does! All kinds of stuff.

  • April 10, 2011, 10:34 p.m. CST

    most would be surprised how many famous creatures Teves designed..

    by spidar40