”Oh yeah? We’ll lets re-direct the moment Mr. I’m so original. Where’s your motivation? Huh? Why copy yourself off of two high school loser ass dickheads? Stu was a pussy ass wet rag. And Billy Loomis? Billy Loomis, what the fuck? Jesus! Talk about a rat looking homo repressed momma’s boy! Why not set your goals higher huh? You wanna be one of the big boys! Huh? Manson, Bundie, O.J, Son of… .”
With “Scream 4” having opened across the country we thought we’d take a ‘Stab’ at a “15 things you didn’t know about….” for each previous film in the series. Some bits will be known, some bits won’t be, and other bits will simply be recollections of rumours that surrounded the franchise – and believe me, having run this site for 13 years or so, I’ve heard them all when it comes to “Scream”.
So lets take a look back at the previous three films in the series- yes, there were three; oh I suppose “Scream 3” resembled a ‘Jay and Silent Bob’ movie more than it did the second sequel to one of the smartest horror films of the ’90s though so that’s likely why some may have unconsciously forgotten it exists, fair-as-muff -complete with fluffy facts and don’t-give-a-damn trivia.
We will likely do “Scream 4” at the end of the series so people have enough time to check it out before we potentially drop minor spoilers and expose technical gaffes.
Today, we remember “Scream 2”.
Scream 2 (1997)
Synopsis : Away at college, Sidney Prescott (Campbell) thought she’d finally put the shocking murders that shattered her life behind her… until a copycat killer begins acting out a real-life sequel. Now as history repeats itself, ambitious reporter Gale Weathers (Cox), deputy Dewey (Arquette) and other Scream survivors find themselves trapped in a terrifyingly clever plotline where no one is safe – or beyond suspicion – in this “delicious, diabolical and fun” (Rolling Stone) sequel.
Drew says : Unfortunately, I watched this movie in about three shifts while working in a video shop. By the time the killer (s) were revealed, I’d forgotten what they had to do with the story. Sidney (Campbell) is at college, and a movie made about the events at Woodsborough years before starts off another round of killings. Completely unrelated except that one of the murderers is the mother of one of the original murderers, wanting revenge.
It seemed as tense and scary as the first film, except you’d think serial killers would wait until they were standing right behind their victim before they show themselves. The number of times the killer would appear and then have to chase the victim all over the house while having to dodge lamps, tables and kicks got a bit much. It wasn’t enough to make me bother with the third one. (Drew Turney)
Clint says : Portia De Rossi’s eyebrows still scare the wife and I. The darkest of the “Scream” sequels (that opening sequence with Jada Pinkett had many of us reaching for a spew bag!), I was torn about my feelings for the rushed sequel (it was released less than twelve months after the release of the first film) for the longest time – but that was before “Scream 3”. Today, “Scream 2” is blown a kiss. My original beef, I guess, is that it’s a sequel that somewhat voids the purpose of the original film – which was to take the piss out of the horror genre, with this film not so much a satire as it is a straight-up slasher film (not unlike those it made fun of back in…er, a year before). Still, this is a quality film – lots of thrills, some great performances (Liev Schrieber graduates from mute featured extra to bonafide supporting player), and a tight and surprising libretto that, though somewhat excessively violent, lets us know that even good guys and heroes sometimes cop a knife in the gut. I remember walking out of the Village Cinemas in Sunshine, with my two female pals (one may have been a booty call), and discussing how much we had enjoyed the film, despite its lack of humour…. something I can’t say for the next sequel.
The film, I recall, got mostly positive reviews upon release (a quick Google will see that Roger Ebert thought it just as good as the first film) and was packing out cinemas for weeks on end; the film was such a monster that “Titanic” and “Tomorrow Never Dies” had their release dates pushed back so they wouldn’t have to compete with it. (Clint Morris)
15 Things You [Possibly] Didn’t Know :
Writer Kevin Williamson, knowing Hollywood is all about the ‘franchise’, supplied a 5-page treatment for “Scream 2” with his original screenplay for “Scream” (As opposed to “Scream 3”, whose script was merely 5-pages of points written on the back of toilet tissue).
In that original screenplay of Williamson’s, he’d add the statement “Wes Craven will make it scary” to some sequences (Maybe the Weinstein’s were known to say “that shitty Crow sequel we did is scarier than that!” after reading each sequence).
It was at a test screening of “Scream” in 1996 that Bob and Harvey Weinstein decided to push forward a sequel (yes, before the first film had even been released) and retained the services of the core cast and crew, as such Jamie Kennedy could afford to hang onto his girlfriend for a few months longer.
Months before the film hit cinemas, the plot of the film leaked onto the internet (I remember those spoilers well because we reported on them; sorry!) . Craven says they were forced to a large portion of the movie, “On Scream 2, we had the first 40 pages of the script show up on the Internet the night they arrived from Kevin, and we had to do backflips to rewrite the opening”. (*SPOILER * Craven also changed the killers. Originally Hallie, Derek, Cotton and Mrs Loomis were the culprits behind the killings and both Sidney bites it. Mickey, who would be exposed as a rogue in the finished film, was merely a loyal classmate of Sidney’s. Oh, and Randy? He’s the lone survivor!). Legend has it a well-known popular time-travelling Melbourne entertainment writer, known for his acid-tongued comments in The Age, was responsible for the ‘killer’ leak.
This was the first film to feature the movie-within-the-movie “Stab”, Hollywood’s version of the Woodsboro Murders (the events of the first film). Luke Wilson and Heather Graham play the characters Skeet Ulrich and Drew Barrymore played in the original film, while Tori Spelling would play Neve Campbell’s character – a bit of a throwback to a jokey line the actress said in the original. Oh, and Robert Rodriguez – then in business with Bob and Harvey – directed the scenes for “Stab”!
Sarah Michelle Gellar agreed to play Cici in the film without even reading the script. The actress had worked with writer Williamson on “I Know What You Did Last Summer” and was quite happy to get back in bed with him – so to speak (She wouldn’t get much action out of Kevin in the sack). I recall Gellar saying she was doing double duty on “Buffy” and “Scream 2” at the same time and made friends with coffee during the period. Someone that had also worked with Williamson before, “Dawson’s Creek” star Joshua Jackson, was more than happy to cameo.
Randy’s line about fake nude pictures of Gale Weathers turning up on the internet was in reference to some faux nudie shots of Courteney Cox that surfaced pre-release. Yuck.
The girl that’s talking to Cici (Gellar) on the phone before the blonde sorority sister meets her demise? That’s Gellar’s “Cruel Intentions” co-star Selma Blair. Hope she at least got tickets to the premiere!
Look closely and you’ll spot “Scream” star Matthew Lillard (‘Stu’) in the background at a frat party (he’d gone from supporting player to featured extra in a year!?)
That whole gothic dance sequence that Sidney participates in? That was scored by “Batman” and “Simpsons” composer Tim Burton (Marco Beltrami scored the rest of the movie). Yeah, shock. Burton. Goth Music.
Wes Craven was taken back at how good Laurie Metcalfe, who had just wrapped nine seasons of the sitcom “Roseanne” when she signed for the film, was at being ‘bad’. What!? Only School Teachers cum Filmmakers can be multitalented, Wes?
Jerry O’Connell, and the other actors who auditioned for the role of Derek (Eric Mabius was one from memory), had to sing “I Think I Love You” a cappella in their meet with the casting director.
If I recall correctly, most of us web guys use to refer to the film as “Scream Again” – that must have been the tentative title for the film leading up to its release.
FYI, Randy actually says the line from “Aliens” wrong ?(“Get away from her you, bitch”) – but originally he was supposed to say it right, and Joshua Jackson’s character was supposed to say it wrong. Jackson accidentally said it correctly though, so Kennedy (as Randy) said it differently… to keep the film flowing. (Did any of that make sense!?)
Next : “Scream 3”