"The Magic Behind the Wild Werewolf Transformation: Unleashing the Spectacular Practical Effects of 'Wolf Like ...'"werewolftransformation,practicaleffects,specialeffects,moviemagic,creaturedesign,horrormovies,movieproduction,behindthescenes,movieeffects,werewolfmovies
"The Magic Behind the Wild Werewolf Transformation: Unleashing the Spectacular Practical Effects of 'Wolf Like ...'"

“The Magic Behind the Wild Werewolf Transformation: Unleashing the Spectacular Practical Effects of ‘Wolf Like …'”

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How the crazy werewolf practical effects were made for ‘Wolf Like Me’


In the second season of the hit show “Wolf Like Me,” the character Mary, played by Isla Fisher, undergoes a remarkable transformation as she gives birth to a wolf child. These stunning werewolf practical effects were made possible through the collaboration of Odd Studio and Alt.vfx. In this article, we explore the behind-the-scenes details of how these effects were created and the creative choices made by the team.

Building on Season One

Odd Studio had previously worked on the first season of “Wolf Like Me,” where they created an animatronic wolf head and a partial werewolf suit. For season two, they built upon these foundations, creating a full-length werewolf suit, complete with hind legs. This expansion allowed for more dynamic shots and improved the performer’s comfort, enhancing the overall performance on screen.

The Challenges of Performance

One of the key considerations for the Odd Studio team was the limitations faced by the performer, Andrew Crawford, while wearing the werewolf suit. To address this, they redesigned the suit to improve functionality and comfort, ultimately leading to a better performance by Crawford. This collaboration between the creators, the visual effects supervisor Jay Hawkins, and Odd Studio allowed for a seamless integration of practical and digital effects, enhancing the overall quality of the show.

Bringing the Wolf Attacks to Life

One intense moment in the show involves Mary, in her wolf form, attacking Gary in their house. To achieve this sequence, Odd Studio utilized their wolf suit builds as much as possible. They also created a specific stunt wolf head, affectionately called “Snappy.” The scene was filmed with Adam Johansen, co-founder of Odd Studio, holding the head and making it snap quickly. Rubber teeth were used for the bashing and thrashing motions, while an animatronic version was operated by the team for other scenes. For full-body shots and frenetic moments, Alt.vfx’s CG wolf was employed.

The Art of Transformation

One of the standout moments in the transformation process is when Mary’s face starts to change into a wolf snout. This effect, called the “change-o-face,” pays homage to the work of Rick Baker, a renowned special effects artist. The team at Odd Studio created a head and shoulder bust with an internal skull that could stretch and change the bone structure from underneath. This intricate practical effect, combined with digital enhancements, created a seamless and visually striking transformation.

Other Transformation Details

In addition to the “change-o-face,” Odd Studio incorporated several other elements to bring Mary’s transformation to life. These included a hand that went through stages of breaking and growth, a bladder effect to change her spine, and prosthetic legs for the stunt double. The attention to detail and collaboration between different departments ensured a cohesive and compelling transformation sequence.

Crafting the Wolf Babies

Season two of “Wolf Like Me” features two different baby wolves. One is a nightmare version that appears in a premonition, while the other is the actual pup that Mary gives birth to. The nightmare pup was crafted as a hand puppet, and the team at Odd Studio had a blast creating a mutated and oversized version. The actual pup, on the other hand, was designed to evoke a sense of beauty and tenderness. It featured cable-controlled puppetry, allowing for realistic movement on set.

Creating Memorable Scenes

The birth scene of the wolf pup involved the use of a mechanical stomach that birthed open, showering Fisher with fake blood. The team at Odd Studio executed this scene with gallons of blood firing out, accompanied by the hand puppet wolf going crazy. This combination of practical effects and digital enhancements brought the scene to life in a visually stunning and dynamic manner.


The practical werewolf effects in “Wolf Like Me” demonstrate the dedication, creativity, and collaboration of the team at Odd Studio. By combining practical effects with digital enhancements, they were able to create memorable and visually striking moments. The attention to detail, from the animatronic suits to the “change-o-face” effect, showcases the artistry and skill involved in bringing creatures and transformations to life on screen. “Wolf Like Me” has truly set a new benchmark for werewolf effects in the world of television.


"The Magic Behind the Wild Werewolf Transformation: Unleashing the Spectacular Practical Effects of
<< photo by Jennifer Kalenberg >>
The image is for illustrative purposes only and does not depict the actual situation.

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Patterson Fiona

Hello, Australia! Fiona Patterson here. I'm your go-to gal for all things politics. I've been on the beat for more than a decade, so when it comes to the ins and outs of Canberra, I'm fair dinkum. Let's rip into it and cut through the jargon together.

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