White Fang / Zanna Bianca (1973)

3.5 out of 5

When Lucio Fulci made family entertainment it was a chance to take a break from shocking adult audiences and instead make a film that would shock a younger audience with some dog fighting, stabbing, a dog versus bear combat and so on.

One of a host of films from a wave in Italian film that was influenced by the work of Jack London this film stars Franco Nero, Virna Lisi and a typecast bad guy John Steiner. For Maurice Poli his extremely minor role in this was prior to his lead in Bava's incredible Rabid Dogs.

While the film does have a cute kid and dog story, features a slapstick fistfight, a musical number and has a number of family friendly themes parental discretion is advised in the case of younger children because there is a fair bit of blood and violence too. The canine star, which is uncredited, is clearly a german shepherd and not a wolf hybrid as the story suggests.


  1. All of the Jack London films came about because of the success of the Harry Alan Towers production of CALL OF THE WILD with Charlton Heston. The Italian industry was geared to follow a new trend as Westerns were losing popularity and George A. Romero hadn't gotten an offer from Dario Argento to help finance a sequel to NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD yet.

  2. Thanks for that William- yes this is clearly another case of the Italian industry following the new popular trend. I suppose Red Coat could be counted as a part of this too despite it not actually being based on Jack London (directly)


Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics