What is Wherewolves about?
Bullies, jocks, and geeks. A teacher. The woods. An unspeakable horror. A fresh take on an old theme where nothing is what it seems. What is out there? Can it really be werewolves?
Using a fun, explosive style, full of new slang and fresh dialogue, Wherewolves is the story of a group of high school seniors, most “military brats”, who are headed for an army-type survival weekend. The underdogs, Jeffrey and Doris, do not want to go as they fear for their safety among the disdain and cruelty of the popular students. Sergeant Tim O’Sullivan, their teacher, as well as their dysfunctional parents pressure them into going, but it is an unforgivable act by their peers that propels the pair to go. Likewise, Elie, a student resented because of his Arab roots, is even more determined to prove himself this weekend. In the background, a news report cautions of a wanted couple with alleged super-human strength supposedly brought on by a new drug on the streets.
In the woods, the students hike, hunt, camp, and soon act in unity as the forest brings them closer together. But does it? O’Sullivan leaves them alone for the night. The students bond, chant, tell campfire tales, and quickly lose their fears and inhibitions. HOO-AH! Though sexual tensions are high, it soon turns to violence and everything quickly turns sour. When the kids start disappearing one after the other, the remaining begin to unwittingly “act like the natives” carving spears, ready to face whatever is out there. What has gotten into them?
Amid blood-curdling growls and gruesome deaths, the story’s underlying layers are revealed. We see how misconceptions, prejudice, greed, fear, and hatred bring out the worst and best in us. What is out there? Can it really be werewolves?
What inspired Wherewolves?
Our love for horror films and George Romero’s body of work – which always includes an underlying social commentary – and particularly Martin (1976).
Tell us a little about you both, who are John Vamvas and Olga Montes?
John Vamvas and Olga Montes started as an acting team in 1992. They soon began to write their own scripts for lack of finding two-person plays they could tour across North America. They’ve written and toured four full-length critically acclaimed plays to packed houses across Canada and the United States, including Bad Boy, which they were invited to perform Off-Off-Broadway at New York’s Creative Place Theatre in the heart of Times Square.
In 2001, they were approached to star in and rewrite the dialogue for the short film, Things Never Said in Playa Perdida. Playa won the audience award at the New York Short Film Festival in 2002 and tied first place at the Festivalisimo festival in Montreal.
John and Olga wrote Wherewolves, a horror screenplay in 2010. It was quickly optioned but the project subsequently fell through. They then adapted WHEREWOLVES into a novel, edited by award-winning Canadian writer Shelley A. Leedahl.
The couple has now turned to indie film production, with Scarpedicemente, a play they wrote and toured in 1996, as their first feature. Scarpedicemente is currently on the Film Festival circuit and to date has garnered 51 Awards and 6 Nominations (watch the trailer for Scarpedicemente here!).
John has extensive experience directing for the stage, including A Hatful of Rain at Montreal’s Centaur Theatre, where he met Olga in 1992. He has as well directed two plays at NY’s Creative Space Theatre, including Frederick Stroppel’s The Mamet Women.
When not acting, Olga works as a freelance translator and simultaneous interpreter, working with high-profile clients, such as the United Nations.