Remember those never-before-seen outtakes from William Friedkin’s The Exorcist that we shared with you for Halloween? That rare footage came courtesy of Paul Davis, who directed Beware the Moon: Remembering An American Werewolf in London as well as the films The Body and Uncanny Annie (both part of Blumhouse’s anthology series “Into the Dark”).
Davis is back this week with another rare and never-before-seen treat, and this time it’s all about An American Werewolf in London. Specifically, Davis has shared the film’s iconic werewolf transformation sequence – with the original rejected musical score!
“Here is something that myself and the team at New Wave Entertainment tried to pull off back in 2008 as a bonus feature for the first Blu-ray release of An American Werewolf in London in September 2009,” Davis explains. “With the blessing of John Landis and Universal Home Entertainment, we attempted to restore Elmer Bernstein’s original score that was recorded and subsequently rejected for the legendary transformation sequence.”
He continues, “Couldn’t quite get there because there were no separate audio tracks to remove the Sam Cooke audio, but it was an interesting experiment. While it wasn’t released on the Blu-ray as a separate feature, we thought the result was pretty interesting, and certainly changes the tone of the scene.”
“We showed it to Rick Baker, who had not heard the score, in the cutting room in LA in ‘08, and he was stunned by it,” Davis also tells Bloody Disgusting this afternoon. “Just seeing that reaction from the guy who created all the FX for the scene was worth it.”
Of course, the finished version of An American Werewolf in London features Sam Cooke’s song “Blue Moon” over top of the transformation scene, as Landis wanted the vibe of the sequence to be “sad and painful” rather than “scary.” But Elmer Bernstein took a stab at scoring the sequence anyway, and now you can finally watch the scene with that track from Bernstein.
Davis notes in the video, “I think you will see in this sequence, as Elmer Bernstein recorded it, it completely changes the scene. It makes it a horror transformation.”