Posted on Wednesday, August 4th, 2021 by Eric Vespe
Scream is in a precarious yet fascinating place as a horror franchise. The upcoming fifth film will be the first that isn’t creatively driven by Wes Craven and Kevin Williamson. The mantle has been passed to fans of the franchise. Enormously talented fans, granted, but not the original creators and the directors seem to be aware of this knife’s edge they’re walking on.
In an interview with uber Scream fansite HelloSidney.com, directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillet and producer Chad Villela, collectively known as a creative group Radio Silence, delve deep into the challenges of making the 5th entry into a decades-spanning franchise.
The Weight of Legacy
There are a few hurdles to overcome when stepping into the rather large shoes of Wes Craven. The biggest thing they seem intent on getting out there is that they want to balance respect for the previous films with not being so focused on convoluted character drama so as to alienate newbies.
Specifically, they said there are a ton of Easter Eggs in the film, but they’re designed so a Scream fan can watch it with their friend who isn’t as familiar with the franchise and everybody has a good time.
They also confirmed that the movie will be rated R (good) and that they’re carrying on the tradition of Scream movies commenting on the horror landscape around them. When the original was made, the landscape was way different than it is today, and they confirmed that their entry will reflect that. A place and time where horror is, in large part, out of the shadows and solidly in the mainstream.
Self-referential movies can go sideways real fast. Look at all the Scream rip-offs and copycats that tried and failed.
The first Scream works so well because it ribs horror tropes and then shows you how you’d fall into them in the real world. Jamie Kennedy watching Halloween and yelling out “Jamie, look behind you!” as Ghostface is behind his very couch is a great example.
The interview with the Radio Silence guys really gives me some hope that they’re up for this job. I had a blast with Ready or Not which, in a lot of ways, can be viewed as a test run for tackling the tone of a Scream film. Ready or Not is a bit silly and a little heightened, but when shit gets real, it gets real fast. That’s Scream.
Here’s their full interview, which lasts just under 11 minutes, if you want to hear them talk at length.
Scream is expected to drop in January of 2022 with Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox, David Arquette, and Marley Shelton returning. New cast members include Kyle Gallner, Jenna Ortega, Melissa Barrera, Dylan Minnette, and Jack Quaid.
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