01st Apr2021

EXCLUSIVE: Filmmaker Hunter G. Williams takes on ‘An American Werewolf in Rome’

by Phil Wheat

Actor, writer, director and producer Hunter G. Williams (pictured above) – whose fantastic film The Madness Within we reviewed back in 2019, describing it as “The Wolf of Wall Street for the Hollywood crowd” is currently shipping a brand new script around Hollywood and he’s got some huge shoes to fill!

Whilst he has an interesting female-lead, dark ensemble comedy based on a true story, called Two for the Money in the works it’s his OTHER project that will be of most interest for Nerdly readers… An American Werewolf in Rome is an homage to the classic 80s werewolf movie An American Werewolf in London which takes the ‘fish out of water’ terror of that film and adds a historical context, tying the werewolf origins to the epic history of Rome and its impact on the world.

Now I’m a huge fan of John Landis’ original movie but I don’t hold it in the same kind of reverence some people do, so much so that I’m willing to admit that I’d like to see another take on that familiar story. So when I heard Williams was set to give us his take on the classic werewolf tropes, it’s safe to say I was VERY excited. After all, this was the guy who took what could have been a self-centred story about one man’s film making career and turned it into one of best insights into the inner workings of Hollywood, the balls you need to survive and what can happen when it all implodes with The Madness Within. Plus Williams has a superb eye for visuals, his take on L.A. in The Madness Within reminding me very much of the stunning visuals of William Friedkin’s To Live and Die in L.A.; and both films mix gorgeous visuals with a sleazy story to perfection too!

But back to An American Werewolf in Rome… I managed to get my hands on the script and LOVED what I read. Just seeing what’s on the page, it seems like there’s scope for a truly epic film – if the film gets the right budget – and honestly it did feel like a successor of sorts to the original film; frankly reading a lot better than An American Werewolf in Paris ended up being on screen. The historical context to Williams’s story truly adds a new dimension to a familiar story. The script has a great balance of laughs and drama, and the characterisations and character interactions really come through in the script; everything seemed very natural and “unscripted” for want of a better word. And the script has a cracking cliffhanger ending too!

I honestly think that whichever studio or streamer picks this up should give the film a decent budget that lets Williams and co. bring the script to life without compromising the epic vision within. Do that and I’m positive whoever does win the rights to An American Werewolf in Rome will be on to a winner themselves. It might just wipe the sour taste of An American Werewolf in Paris out of the franchises’ fans mouths too. Seriously.


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