Was Marvel's Werewolf by Night Shot on Film For Disney Plus?
If you had to pick one 2022 feature to get you in the mood for Halloween, it has to be Marvel’s Werewolf by Night on Disney Plus, and we reveal if the black-and-white special was shot on film.
Copying the style of Universal monster movies gone before from the 30s and 40s, a number of techniques were used to make Werewolf by Night feel as authentic as possible, even though the narrative was set during modern times in the MCU.
Directed by Michael Giacchino and written by Heather Quinn and Peter Cameron for Disney Plus, Werewolf by Night is based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name and serves as Marvel’s first presentation of its kind. The feature stars Laura Donnelly and Harriet Sansom Harris alongside Gael García Bernal as the titular monster.
Was Werewolf by Night Shot on Film?
No, Werewolf by Night was not shot on film, opting for shooting digitally instead, however, Michael Giacchino explained the process of achieving the special’s final look to Fandom:
“After we watched the first version of it in black and white, Kevin Feige turned to me and said, ‘I guess this needs to be in black and white, right?’ And I was like, ‘Yes, yes, it does!’ And we just went full force; we even filmed out the 35-millimeter. We did everything we could to make it as legit as possible and I think it shows. When you look at it, you’re like, wait, what, where is this from?”
“Filmed out the 35-millimeter” basically means the director scanned the digital onto 35mm in order to achieve an authentic look without actually using film to shoot.
Kevin Feige was Unsure of the Black and White Style
Speaking to Variety, Giacchino revealed Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige was not easily persuaded to set Werewolf by Night in black and white.
Feige didn’t actually agree to the black-and-white style until “maybe the third cut”, confirmed Giacchino, which could pave the way for more creative styles to be injected into the MCU.
The composer-turned-director also mentioned a “special monitor” was brought on set, which allowed him to see what each shot was going to look like in the greyscale palette.
Giacchino Used a Number of Practical Effects
Keeping on brand with the old Universal monster movies, Giacchino also leaned on practical effects to bring his creature feature to life instead of opting for CGI.
Gael García Bernal’s transformation from Jack Russell into the titular werewolf showcased the use of prosthetics and practical makeup to make the monster look as real as possible.
Furthermore, YouTube channel New Rockstars confirmed the shot where Jack is transforming as a shadow on the wall was shot completely in camera without the use of VFX, likely timing the strobe light effect with multiple stand-ins wearing different costumes to show Jack’s transformation.
By Jo Craig – [email protected]
Werewolf by Night is now streaming on Disney Plus.