Are Werewolves the New Vampires?

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Photo: Courtesy of Atlantic Releasing Corporation

It seems like only yesterday that vampires, with their immortality and metaphorical malleability, supplanted zombies as entertainment's go-to monster. But will werewolves be the bloodsuckers to beat in 2009? Maybe! In January, Underworld 3: Rise of the Lycans hits theaters, followed in April by the vaguely anticipated remake of The Wolf Man, starring Benicio Del Toro and Anthony Hopkins. And in their wake comes a whole litter of low-to-no-budget indie movies about lycanthropes, including one we're particularly excited about: First Howl, starring C. Thomas Howell (no, really!) and Eric Stolz.

But that's just the beginning! There are lots more were-projects in various stages of development: In addition to Ridley Scott's rumored wolf movie, David Hayter, writer of Watchmen, X-Men, and X2, is slated to write and direct one, and Fox is developing a Sex and the City–style series about a group of female lycanthropes in New York City (tentatively titled Bitches — stay classy, Fox!).

But if Hollywood does pick a new favorite monster, it'll probably be Stephenie Meyer's fault again; in anticipation of Twilight's blockbuster box-office success this weekend, Summit Entertainment has acquired the rights to the book's three sequels and hired Twilight writer Melissa Rosenberg to pen screenplays for New Moon and Eclipse, both of which feature … werewolves! And what's more, Moon's wolf character, Jacob, is the romantic competitor of Edward, the series' main vampire, which means fans of the books have already split into two camps. So when Twilight 2 hits theaters, not only will it hopelessly divide friends, families, and Facebook groups, but it will probably take vampires down a peg too.