After 11 years without a Scream sequel, most superfans were convinced that we’d never get a new one. Luckily Scream 4 proved all of us wrong. A new Ghostface was terrorizing the teens of Woodsboro and Sidney, Gale, and Dewey came back to finish them off. Although this one didn’t do as well in theaters compared to its predecessors, it’s still a high quality offering in the slasher horror franchise. As you gear up for the new Scream (2022) by watching the rest of the series, definitely don’t leave this one out. Then come back here for some interesting behind-the-scenes trivia. Remember: Spoilers ahead.
Dewey’s Missing Limp
After being stabbed toward the end of the first Scream, our favorite Deputy Dewey had a limp as a result of the wound. Makes sense, right? So you might have noticed that his limp is gone in Scream 4. A script note explained it was because he’d gone through years of physical therapy, although that was never mentioned in the finished product. It could be that the 11-year gap between Scream 3 and 4 could amount to a lot of PT work–or maybe David Arquette just didn’t want to limp anymore. We’ll probably never know.
Emma Roberts’ Intro To Horror
Emma Roberts is known for her horror roles, but it wasn’t always that way. Scream 4 was her very first horror movie. She proved herself so well as Jill Roberts that it spawned a successful horror career. She was the lead in Scream Queens and had prominent roles in most seasons of American Horror Story. What’s especially weird is she actually hates watching horror. She had to watch the first three Scream movies under the safety of her covers just to prepare for this movie.
It’s All About The Remake
Each Scream has a theme, informing the characters of the “rules” they need to follow. The original was about slasher horror movies, Scream 2 was about sequels, and Scream 3 was about the final movie of a trilogy. In each instance, the rules of the killings mirror the rules for those kinds of movies. Although Scream 4 isn’t technically a remake of the original, they certainly tried their best to make it feel that way. Many scenes mirror those of Scream, including Kirby answering horror movie trivia with the killer to save someone, just like Drew Barrymore’s Casey. Next time you watch this one, look for all the parallels.
Getting Spooked On Set
The production was full of pranks–chief among them spooking the cast. Lulled into a false sense of security, cast members would relax when they knew Ghostface wasn’t a part of whatever scene they were filming. Yeah, that was a mistake. They’d have someone dressed up as Ghostface pop out when they least expected it, creating some hilarious reactions. You can even see some of these scares in the Scream 4 gag reel.
Kirby Might Still Be Alive
Kirby, played by Hayden Panettiere, has been a fan-favorite since Scream 4 was released. Her sass and wit was like none other, so when she was killed by Ghostface, it was a major blow. Here’s the thing: She was the only person who wasn’t confirmed dead by the end of the movie. In fact, there was a scene in the original shooting script that revealed she was still alive. Cross your fingers that Kirby will be back for the new Scream (2022).
Deputy Hoss, The Killer
In an earlier version of the script, Deputy Hoss, played by Adam Brody, was one of the killers. It’s unclear whether he would have been a third killer or taken someone else’s place. Either way, it would have been the first time in the franchise where one of the killers was a member of the police. This is after countless speculation of Deputy Dewey turning evil. Who knows; maybe he’s a killer in the next installment?
The Biggest Body Count In The Franchise
If you wanted more brutality, you got it. Scream 4 has the most kills in the Scream franchise so far. The first Scream only had 8 deaths, including those of the real killers, Billy and Stu. Scream 2 and 3 went on to have 10 deaths each while Scream 4 had 14. Although keep in mind, Kirby isn’t included in that count since she wasn’t confirmed dead.
The Cox-Arquette Relationship Ends
Scream has the distinction of being the catalyst for the rise and fall of the relationship between Courtney Cox (Gale) and David Arquette (Dewey). They met on the set of the first Scream, fell in love by Scream 2, and had gotten married right before Scream 3. Unfortunately, by Scream 4 they were separated and they divorced shortly afterward. Maybe they will get back together after Scream (2022)? We can only hope.
Judy Hicks, The New Survivor
It’s customary at the end of a Scream film for there to be a new survivor along with the three original cast members of Sidney, Gale, and Dewey. In Scream, it was Randy, along with Cotton in Scream 2 and Kincaid in Scream 3. For this installment, Judy Hicks, played by Marley Shelton, survives her stabbing. She even ends the film in an arm sling just like Patrick Dempsey’s Kincaid did in the previous movie. Since both Randy and Cotton didn’t make it much further in the series, neither of these characters should feel safe.
Now We Get CGI Knives
Typically in horror movies, prop knives are used by the killers. They’re made out of all sorts of material, from cardboard to plastic, and often collapse to make it look like the blade has entered the body during a stabbing. Wes Craven had enough of the fakes, though, asserting that they didn’t look like the real thing. For Scream 4, he went with a CGI knife instead, a first for the franchise. Could you tell the difference?
Kevin Williamson’s Trouble With Production
Kevin Williamson was lauded as a slasher revival visionary after penning the original Scream, but his time with the franchise has been fraught ever since. He wrote Scream 2 but had too many other commitments for Scream 3. Even so, he wrote an outline for it that was pretty much thrown out entirely by successor Ehren Kruger. With Scream 4, he was available and ready to go, only for producers to fight him every step of the way. In the end, they brought Kruger in again to fix Williamson’s script, though he remained uncredited. Needless to say, Williamson was pissed.
A Nod To Fight Club
When one of the killers is revealed to be Jill Roberts, played by Emma Roberts, she ends up injuring herself to make her look more convincingly like a victim. She throws herself around the room and falls backward into a glass table, mirroring a scene in Fight Club when Edward Norton’s character does the same. Now that’s commitment.
Wes Craven’s Final Film
Wes Craven, the king of horror movies and director of some of your favorites including the Scream franchise, died in 2015. He passed away at the age of 76 after a battle with brain cancer. Scream 4 was his final movie before he passed.
The Beginning Of A New Trilogy
Scream 4 was originally intended to be the start of a new Scream trilogy. They even got as far as pre-production for the next film with the original cast. But with Wes Craven’s death and the start of the Scream TV series, they packed up the idea. That means that the new Scream (2022) isn’t an entry in that second trilogy idea.
Blame The Weinstein Brothers
The production of Scream 4 could have gone smoothly if it wasn’t for executive producers Bob and Harvey Weinstein. Much of the contention was due to them, including Kevin Williamson’s rough time writing the script. You can also blame them for Kirby’s fate being up-in-the-air since it was their choice to remove a scene with her alive at the end of the movie. Of course, with how much of an actual monster Harvey Weinstein is, this is low on the list of offenses.