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Scream (1996)

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A year after the murder of her mother, a teenage girl is terrorized by a new killer, who targets the girl and her friends by using horror films as part of a deadly game.

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7 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Casey Becker
... Phone Voice (voice)
Kevin Patrick Walls ... Steve Orth
... Casey's Father
Carla Hatley ... Casey's Mother
... Sidney Prescott
... Billy Loomis
Lawrence Hecht ... Neil Prescott
... Gale Weathers
... Kenny Jones
... Tatum Riley
Lois Saunders ... Mrs. Tate
... Deputy Dewey
Joseph Whipp ... Sheriff Burke
... Stuart
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Storyline

1 year after her mother's death, Sydney Prescott (Neve Campbell), and her friends started experiencing some strange phone calls. They later learned the calls were coming from a crazed serial killer, in a white faced mask and a large black robe, looking for revenge. His phone calls usually consist of many questions, the main one being: Whats your favorite scary movie? Along with many scary movie trivia, ending with bloody pieces of innocent lives scattered around the small town of Woodsboro. Written by Joss Oran

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From The First Name In Suspense Comes The Last Word In Fear See more »

Genres:

Horror | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong graphic horror violence and gore, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 December 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Scary Movie  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,354,586, 22 December 1996, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$103,046,663

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$173,046,663
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut) (PAL DVD)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kevin Williamson was partially inspired by a real life series of student murders in Gainesville, Florida in 1990, perpetrated by killer Danny Harold Rolling who was later dubbed "The Gainesville Ripper." He was inspired to draft an 18-page script treatment about a young woman, alone in a house, who is taunted over the phone and then attacked by a masked killer. The treatment remained as a short story while Williamson worked on another script, Teaching Mrs. Tingle (1999), a thriller that he would eventually sell but that would languish in development hell for many years. Struggling to pay his bills, Williamson secluded himself in Palm Springs and focused on the development of his Scary Movie treatment, hoping for a quick sale to meet his financial needs. Over the course of three days, Williamson developed a full-length script as well as two separate five-page outlines for potential sequels-Scary Movie 2 (2001) and Scary Movie 3 (2003). He hoped to entice buyers with the potential for a franchise. In an interview, Williamson said that one reason he focused on the Scary Movie (2000) script was because it was a film he wanted to watch, born of his childhood love of horror films such as Halloween (1978), but "nobody else [was] making it". See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 12 mins) At Stu's party, everyone watches Halloween. When they watch the scene when Michael Myers stabs somebody and nails him to the wall with his knife, someone complains that the blood in that scene is too red. However, this scene had no blood, however since they are drinking alcohol and are obviously intoxicated he couldn't have known. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Casey: Hello?
Phone Voice: Hello.
Casey: Yes?
Phone Voice: Who is this?
Casey: Who are you trying to reach?
Phone Voice: What number is this?
Casey: Well, what number are you trying to reach?
Phone Voice: I don't know.
Casey: I think you have the wrong number.
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Right before the credits roll, there is a quick flash of the killer's face (Ghostface), so quick, it causes the viewer to doubt they actually saw it. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Smart Guy: Break Up Not to Make Up (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Artificial World (Interdimensional Mix)
Performed by Julee Cruise with The Flow
Written by Julee Cruise, Louis Tucci, Supa Dj Dmitri, DJ Silver
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Clever, scary and funny - a must-see for horror fans
13 April 2007 | by See all my reviews

Making a brilliant, original horror film is pretty hard these days, since practically everything has already been told, and more than once. Using that premise, director Wes Craven and screenwriter Kevin Williamson came up with Scream, whose cleverness derives from the fact that it knows every single stereotype of the genre and satirizes them.

Take the opening sequence, for example: a young girl (Drew Barrymore) is making popcorn and waiting for her boyfriend when she suddenly receives a phone call. Normally, this would be a huge clichè, only this time the killer decides to play a little game (horror film quiz, naturally) with his victim. In fact, the only reason why he kills her is that she gave the wrong answer to one of his questions (those who haven't seen Friday 13th might want to skip that bit, as it spoils said movie's ending). That scene is both very scary (the murder is quite graphic and disturbing) and at the same time funny (it tests the characters', and the audience's, knowledge of the horror genre), and the rest of the film continues in the same vein: after the first killing, the masked psychopath starts disposing of other teenagers in the town of Woodsboro using the same technique. One of the targets is Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), whose mother was raped and killed the year before. This implies the killer might be the same, but who could it be? Sidney's distant father? Her mother's lover (Liev Schreiber)? Or some random guy, with no motive at all?

Fortunately, it is not the last category: this murderer has a motive and a plausible identity as well. But it isn't the payoff that makes Scream interesting; it's how Craven and Williamson get to it, by outlining the genre's conventions (some of which were actually invented by the director himself) and using them in a clever, if self-referential, way. The point of the movie is, the more you know of this kind of films (pay attention to the rules, stated by geeky film buff Randy), the more chances you have to survive (although you must take into account that the killer has seen the same movies). The in-jokes that would ruin other films are the very cause of Scream's success, with memorable scenes such as the villain mimicking the movie his victims are watching or Craven's unmissable cameo as a janitor wearing Freddy Krueger's outfit (not to mention priceless lines like "Movies don't create psychos, movies make psychos more creative!").

In other words, Scream is a smart, effective horror film, which manages to amuse and scare in equal measures. Definitely worth watching, even if the two sequels (especially Scream 3) don't really match the original's intelligence and, forgive the expression, originality.


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