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The world premiere unveiling of a freshly remastered digital print of John LandisAn American Werewolf in London was arguably the highlight of the Film 4 Frightfest last weekend. To accompany this, the festival also premiered Paul Davis‘ long awaited, self initiated American Werewolf retrospective documentary, Beware the Moon. Settling in for this double bill was like watching the new Werewolf Blu-Ray in the best possible circumstances: on a huge screen, wonderfully projected and in the company of over a thousand ardent horror fans.

Landis stuck around for most of the weekend, enjoying the films and joining in with the Q&As (see my previous Frightfest posts to read about the highlight of his enthused interjections). I think he must also have signed his name some seven or eight hundred times, but he didn’t give so many interviews at all – just two, or three perhaps. Consider me very lucky then, that he agreed to speak to me or rather to you, through my video interview. I’ve embedded it below.

Amongst the topics under discussion are the Werewolf remaster, why the upcoming Trading Places Blu-Ray is the first home video version to actually present the film Landis intended, the use of score in Animal House and, on a newsy front, what Landis could tell me about his upcoming Burke and Hare picture with Simon Pegg.

Then talking to Paul Davis (though Landis butts back in for a moment), I get to ask about Beware the Moon and Paul’s next project, his first narrative feature film.

I wish I’d had longer to speak to Landis. He’s a genuinely astonishing, triple-A director in my book and he’s done so much that bears so much discussion.

The interview was conducted in the wee small hours of Sunday morning after Landis had presented Thriller and The Making of Thriller to us. They weren’t remastered, unfortunately, but did look pretty darn great just as an effect of their scale. Like Landis himself, I think they really deserve a good scrub and a shiny disc rerelease.

I was flying alone here, and without a tripod, so please accept the footage for what it is.

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