Scream (1996) Poster



Jump to: Cameo (1) | Director Cameo (1) | Director Trademark (1) | Spoilers (17)
The party scene near the end of the film runs 42 minutes long. It was shot over the course of 21 days from the time the sun set to the time it raised. After it wrapped, the crew had t-shirts made that read " I SURVIVED SCENE 118" (which was the name of the scene during shooting).
These are the horror film rules as stated in the movie:
  • 1. You will not survive if you have sex

  • 2. You will not survive if you drink or do drugs

  • 3. You will not survive if you say "I'll be right back"

  • 4. Everyone is a suspect.

Two additional rules come from the killer:
  • 5. You will not survive if you ask "Who's there?"

  • 6. You will not survive if you go out to investigate a strange noise.

Courteney Cox and David Arquette met and fell in love on the set of this movie. They eventually married, but divorced in 2013.
All the killer's phone calls were really done by Roger Jackson on set with a cell phone. At one point, the crew were contacted by the police demanding to know who they were because they thought there was a real killer making the phone calls.
When the killer smashes his head through a window and Casey hits him in the face with the phone, Wes Craven is actually wearing the costume and was really hit in the face.
The use of caller ID increased more than threefold after the release of this film.
When you see the janitor, you can see a reference to Freddy Krueger. He's wearing a red and green shirt, just like Freddy, and the Principal calls him Fred.
The killer was based on a Florida serial killer, the "Gainesville Ripper."
The mask is based on the painting "Scream" by Edvard Munch.
During production, Ghostface's signature black robe was going to be white, to make him appear even more like a ghost. This was changed in fear of people comparing the costume to those that the Ku Klux Klan wear.
The boyfriend in Psycho (1960) is named Samuel Loomis. Samuel Loomis was the doctor in Halloween (1978). In Scream, the teens are watching Halloween. In Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998), the teens are watching Scream 2 (1997).
Originally titled "Scary Movie" which was later used for a parody of the Scream (1996) and other pop culture horror films like it: Scary Movie (2000)
When the phone slips out of Billy's hand and hits Stu's head, it was completely unintentional. Wes Craven kept it in because of Stu's realistic reaction.
The film's high school scenes were to be shot at Santa Rosa High School in California in the Santa Rosa District. However, very close to the shooting date, the school board read the script and denied the film to be shot there due to the violent nature, as they had been under the impression the film was a comedy, and production was moved to Healdsburg, CA. As payback, Wes Craven put in the end credits under the special thanks section "NO THANKS WHATSOEVER TO THE SANTA ROSA CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT GOVERNING BOARD".
Rose McGowan dyed her hair blonde in order to contrast her black hair from Neve Campbell's.
Being a favorite of the writer Kevin Williamson, Molly Ringwald was offered the role of Sydney Prescott, but turned it down, saying she'd rather not be playing a high school student at the age of 27.
Kevin Patrick Walls, who plays Drew Barrymore's ill-fated boyfriend, was given this small part as compensation for not getting the role of Billy.
When Bob Weinstein watched parts of the first scenes filmed (rough cuts), he said that the mask used was "idiotic". He asked the producers to film one scene with seven different masks and let him choose the one he liked the most. Producers didn't agree and threatened to shut down production. They told him to wait until the first sequence (Drew Barrymore's) was completed and then he could decide. After watching it, he happily agreed to the mask used and didn't make another complaint for the rest of the filming.
The film was sent to the MPAA over nine times for re-consideration, as they were going to slap the movie with a NC-17 rating. With each time the MPAA made Wes Craven cut out more of the films gore heavy shots. Bob Weinstein eventually had to step in, which secured the films R rating. Wes Craven wanted to know what Bob Weinstein had said to the MPAA to get them to give the film its R Rating - he told them to view the film as a comedy and not a horror film. This completely changed the MPAA'S view point.
Stu's line "I always had a thing for ya, Sid!" and Sidney's response "In your dreams!" were ad-libbed by Matthew Lillard and Neve Campbell.
The film was released in December, five days before Christmas. The studio did this because during the holiday season, family friendly movies are usually released, and the studio wanted to give the horror audience something to see during a time when no horror movies would be out. It opened at #4 with 6.4 million, which led the studio to believe the film had flopped. However, the film's good word of mouth is what led to its success at the box office. With every week it went up or stayed at the same place in the box office. By the end of its run, it ended up making over 100 million at the United States box office.
Rose McGowan discovered that she could actually fit through a pet flap.
Tatum says that the situation is like a Wes Carpenter film. This is a reference to Wes Craven, who directed the movie, and John Carpenter, who directed Halloween (1978), which is featured in the movie.
Matthew Lillard (Stu) add-libbed the line "Ah... Houston, we have a problem" when he discovered that the gun was gone.
Freddie Prinze Jr. auditioned for the role of Stu.
David Arquette's character Dewey is specified as being 25 years old, approximately 7 years older than most other lead characters who are in high school. However, Arquette is roughly the same age as most of his costars and is actually slightly younger than Skeet Ulrich, Matthew Lillard, and Jamie Kennedy, who all play high schoolers.
Drew Barrymore was originally cast as Sidney Prescott (eventually played by Neve Campbell). But Drew Barrymore insisted that if she played Casey then it would make the audience think anything could happen.
The special effects artists used about 50 gallons of blood.
To keep Drew Barrymore looking scared and crying, director Wes Craven kept telling her real life stories about animal cruelty. She is a keen animal lover in real life.
The bathroom that Sidney is attacked in is the same one used on the "Stab 3" set in Scream 3 (2000).
It is mentioned near the end of the film that they used Corn Syrup dyed red for the blood in several famous horror movies. During the films climax, the production crew really did use corn syrup dyed red.
On The Directors (1999) in 2007, David Arquette revealed that he presumptuously turned down the role of "Billy" in favor for playing "Dewey", which was originally written as a hunky, leading man part.
Drew Barrymore and Neve Campbell did not meet Roger Jackson, the actor who played The Voice, before shooting commenced. Whenever they are talking on the phone to the killer, they are actually talking to him.
Joaquin Phoenix turned down the role of Billy Loomis.
Tatum's house is right across the street from the house in Santa Rosa, California used in Pollyanna (1960). It is also across the street from the house used in Alfred Hitchcock's Shadow of a Doubt (1943). The house in the opening scene was next door to the house used in Cujo (1983).
Casey claims that all of the sequels to A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) "sucked". Wes Craven sold the rights to sequels before the film was released and became a success and disliked many of the sequels. See also: A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge (1985).
As revealed on The Directors (1999) in 2007, Wes Craven originally turned down "Scream" because it was too violent, but reconsidered making one more gory movie for the hungry fans who continually told him that his best movie was The Hills Have Eyes (1977).
Wes Craven discovered the Ghostface mask while scouting for filming locations in California. Craven was walking throughout a possible filming-house, and inside one of the rooms he saw the mask hung on a wall. He sent a photo to Dimension Films and they told him to have the prop department make a mask similar to the mask in the bedroom, as they did not own the rights to the mask.
Kevin Williamson's screenplay caused a bidding war in Hollywood.
Winner of the 1997 Mtv Movie Award for Best Picture.
Melissa Joan Hart, Brittany Murphy, Alicia Witt, Melanie Lynskey and Melinda Clarke all auditioned for the role of Sidney Prescott.
Rebecca Gayheart auditioned for the role of Tatum Riley, but scheduling conflicts with her film Somebody Is Waiting (1996) prevented her from landing the role. She later turned up in Scream 2 (1997) playing a sorority sister.
Alicia Witt and Brittany Murphy auditioned for the role of Sidney Prescott. It was offered to Reese Witherspoon, who turned it down.
Tori Spelling was considered for the role of Sidney Prescott.
David Arquette and Matthew Lillard were initially considered for the role of Billy Loomis before being eventually cast as Dewey Riley and Stu Macher respectively. Arquette was also considered for the role of Stu.
The filming of Scream is Rose McGowan's favorite filming experience in her career.
Brooke Shields was nearly cast as Gale Weathers after Janeane Garofalo turned the role down.
The cheerleader in the washroom scene was played by one of Skeet Ulrich's girlfriends.
Although the killer's costume is often referred to as "Ghostface" the costume is actually called "Father Death". Dewey brings a costume in the package into the police station after Sidney is first attacked.
After the bathroom attack there was a scene in the script where Sidney bursts into the Principal's office and reports the incident crying for help. Although the scene was not included in the final cut it explains why Himbry ultimately decided to suspend the lessons and dismiss the students.
The opening with Drew Barrymore lasts for 12 minutes.
There was a 5 page treatment for Scream 2 (1997) at the end of the screen play, written by the screenwriter Kevin Williamson. It was written into a full blown script after the movie became a smash hit at the box office.
Contains spoilers for Friday the 13th (1980).
Rose McGowan was so small that when she was in the pet door she kept falling out. They had to nail her shirt to the inside of garage door to prevent from falling out.
When Jamie Kennedy is explaining the rules of the horror film to the group, a video case on top of the TV clearly shows 'SCREAM' as one of the videos.
Reese Witherspoon turned down the lead role.
When Tatum enters the garage, it is noted by many viewers that her Nipples are extremely erect through her shirt. This was not a prosthetic- this was the actresses real nipples.
The Jiffy Pop popcorn in the first scene acts as a clock. It goes from normal to out of control as does the scene
Justin Whalin was considered for the role of Billy Loomis and even screen tested opposite Neve Campbell while she was auditioning for the role of Sidney Prescott.
Scream pays yet another homage to the original Halloween movie by using the song 'Dont Fear the Reaper'. The Scream version is a remake and is played while Billy sneaks into Sidney's room towards the beginning of the movie. In Halloween it is playing in the car while Laurie and Annie are on their way to babysit.
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Breckin Meyer was the second choice for Randy Meeks.
During the party scene, soon after Gail places the camera above the TV, Sydney and Dewey are suddenly approached by Randy who says, "hidden, camera".
Marco Beltrami landed scoring duties after Wes Craven's assistant was on an Internet chat site, asking if anyone knew of any fresh musical talent.
At the breakfast table, Tatum can be seen pouring milk from a Lucerne milk carton. Lucerne is a local dairy company located in Sonoma County, CA, where the movie was filmed.
William Faulkner's novel "As I Lay Dying" (1930) features a character named Skeet McGowan (Scream (1996) features actors Skeet Ulrich and Rose McGowan) and a character named Dewey just as Scream (1996) does.
Melinda Clarke turned down the role of Tatum Riley.
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'Wes Craven' [strong female characters]: Sidney Prescott, Gale Weathers & Tatum.
Rose McGowan still has her 'Scary Movie' wine bottle with the wine still in it, that the cast and crew received at the wrap party
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Breckin Meyer and Jason Lee had auditioned for the role of Randy Meeks. Meyer, Lee and Jamie Kennedy all were in the final callback for the audition process. Kennedy ended up getting the role.
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The production moved to the Sonoma Community Center in the City of Sonoma for the high school scenes. It was always scheduled to be shot in the Healdsburg area.
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Charlotte Ayanna was considered for the role of Tatum Riley.
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Actor W. Earl Brown, who played Gale's assistant Kenny, also appears in Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994) and Vampire in Brooklyn (1995).
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A.J. Langer screen tested for the role of Sidney Prescott.
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Michael Landes auditioned for the role of Billy Loomis.
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On the movie cover which shows the cast, Skeet Ulrich has a mustache and goatee, although he is completely clean shaven in the film.
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Justin Shenkarow loved the screenplay so much that he elected to take a minor behind-the-scenes role. His name appears 25th from the bottom of the credits.
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Linda Blair:  the reporter who says, "People want to know, they have a right to know."

Director Cameo 

Wes Craven:  Fred, the janitor.

Director Trademark 

Wes Craven:  [Establishing]  Wide, establishing exterior shots of Casey's home.
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The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

In the scene where a drunk Randy is telling Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween to turn around through the TV, he repeats, "Jamie, turn around. Turn around, Jamie!" as the killer is slowly creeping up behind him. This is somewhat of an inside joke, as the actor who plays Randy is also named Jamie (Jamie Kennedy) and the killer is behind him.
When Sidney comes out of the closet and stabs Billy with an umbrella, the stunt man was supposed to hit a pad on Skeet Ulrich's chest. The first hit got the pad but the second one slipped and hit him in the chest. Ulrich's chest has metal wiring beneath the skin from open-heart surgery he had as a child, which causes him intense pain should it be struck or have pressure applied to it. Thus, when the umbrella accidentally stuck his chest, his shocked expression and scream of pain were genuine. Wes Craven kept it in because of its authenticity.
The scene where the killer is sneaking up behind Randy is the only one where the person in the costume is actually one of the actors rather than a stunt man. Skeet Ulrich has specifically asked if he could wear the costume for one scene.
Dewey (David Arquette) was supposed to die from the stab wound to the back. Director Wes Craven filmed the scene at the end of the film, where Dewey is alive and being taken to the hospital, just in case he changed his mind about killing Dewey. The screen-test audience loved the character Dewey so much that Craven decided to add his survival scene in the final cut. If you watch closely during the part where Gale (Courteney Cox) is knocked out by Billy (Skeet Ulrich), you can see that Dewey is not breathing when Gale lands on him because Dewey was intended to be dead. Every time Dewey is shown after he is stabbed before the final scene is intended to be his dead body, not him lying unconscious.
This is the only film in the series in which the opening title card appears before the opening murder.
The MPAA wanted to cut out the graphic shot of the killer stabbing Casey Becker at the beginning, but director Wes Craven claimed it was the only take of it they had filmed (which wasn't true). The shot remained intact.
The death of Principal Himbry was added to the film after Bob Weinstein noticed that there was about 30 pages in the script where nobody died and told Kevin Williamson that "somebody must die". Subsequently, the addition of the scene gave Kevin Williamson a good reason to have all the party guests leave the party near the climax.
In Scream 2 (1997), the fictional "Stab" movie which is a movie about the events of Scream re-enacts the opening scene with Drew Barrymore. During the scene in the real Scream, the shadow of a crew member is briefly visible for a moment when Drew Barrymore is running. In "Stab", they recreate this goof but the entire silhouette of a person is visible while she is running.
The only movie in the Scream series where the killer (or at least one of the killers) isn't seen unmasking themselves when they reveal their true identity to Sidney.
There is a scene towards the end of the film where Sidney runs through Stu's house in order to escape the killer. One of the rooms she runs in is decorated extensively with macabre imagery, including several mutilated dolls hanging from the ceiling. Sidney barricades this room with a surf board, a clue that she's in a teenager's bedroom. This is all a hint that Stu is the killer (he's later revealed to be one of two), and further development of his character, as his motives for homicide are never fully explored.
The idea of the pet door in the garage came from Kevin Williamson's assistant. Originally, Tatum's death scene was to be a fist fight with the killer, and having the door come down on her neck.
When we first see Billy, the song "Don't Fear the Reaper" is heard in the background. Billy is later revealed as being one of the "reapers".
There are 7 deaths in the movie (8 With Maureen): Maureen Prescott, Steven, Casey, The Principal, Tatum, Kenny, Stu (2nd Killer), Billy (1st Killer).
After Tatum dies, Sidney calls out for her and someone says "No one here but us chickens". In Rebel Without a Cause (1955), James Dean and Natalie Wood say the same line when Sal Mineo is looking for them in the abandoned house.
When filming Tatum's death scene, Rose McGowan went to the producers and told them that she can't scream. McGowan still tried and managed to make a few screams and squeals.
None of the Scream films, showed Dewey mourn the death of his sister, Tatum.
After filming Tatum's death in the garage. Rose McGowan was bruised all up her torso and her interarm from hanging in the petdoor for hours.
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