[Exclusive Interview] The Cast of SCREAM Talks Joining Franchise
Courtesy Paramount Pictures & Spyglass Media Group
Since the new trailer was released earlier this week, we’ve all been screaming for Ghostface returning to the big screen in SCREAM, which will be in theaters on January 14, 2022! Nightmarish Conjurings is excited to share the next part of interviews with the new cast of SCREAM, from a virtual press junket I attended! Several other online journalists and I had the pleasure of chatting via Zoom with Melissa Barrera, Kyle Gallner, Mason Gooding, Mikey Madison, Dylan Minnette, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid, Jasmin Savoy Brown, and Sonia Ammar!

SCREAM is based on characters created by Kevin Williamson, produced by William Sherak, p.g.a. James Vanderbilt, p.g.a. Paul Neinstein, p.g.a., Executive Produced by Kevin Williamson, Chad Villella, Gary Barber, Peter Oillataguerre, Ron Lynch, Cathy Konrad, Marianne Maddalena, written by James Vanderbilt and Guy Busick, and directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett (Ready or Not).

During the press junket, Melissa Barrera, Kyle Gallner, Mason Gooding, Mikey Madison, Dylan Minnette, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid, Jasmin Savoy Brown, and Sonia Ammar, all told us they are incredibly excited to be joining the SCREAM franchise. Some of the cast shared the names of their characters in the film; Melissa Barrera plays Sam, Mason Gooding plays Chad, Sonia Ammar plays Liv, Jasmin Savoy Brown plays Mindy, Dylan Minnette plays Wes, Mikey Madison plays Amber, and Kyle Gallner plays Vince.

Nancy from LRM online: How excited are you to join a classic franchise that you probably grew up watching?

Jenna Ortega: I feel like I’m living in a fantasy world whereas every day I walk onto the set or interact with my classmates and it’s all just so perfect, it’s so unbelievable. I’ve just been having such an amazing time that it’s almost too good to be true. And especially to be a part of a franchise that I respect so much and just have such an immense amount of love for, it’s such an amazing feeling and I just could not be more grateful to be here. To even be given the opportunity and I’m really surrounded by the people who are the best and the best at what they do and that’s also just like a cherry on top and it’s been beautiful.

Patrick from Comicbook.com: SCREAM is known for unexpected killers and unexpected deaths. Most people don’t survive the movie unless you’re Neve Campbell, David Arquette, or Courtney Cox. So, when the idea presented itself in your mind were you like, “Oh man, I hope I get to be the killer? I hope I get to die I hope I get to be in the opening scene.” What did you guys hope you got to do in this movie?

Jack Quaid: Yeah, we don’t know and that’s what’s actually kind of been really fun about shooting this is just the kind of mystery that we all have different versions of the script, and we don’t really know what’s going on. So, it’s got to be a more general answer for me, but I was just excited to be in a SCREAM movie period because I feel like it’s kind of a gateway drug to horror. It’s a celebration of horror and I think, after I watched the first one, I checked out Friday The 13th, Halloween, and A Nightmare on Elm Street. Just to be in the movie that celebrates horror in the way that it does, I would have just been happy to say a reference to another horror film within it. So, I’m just very happy to be here.

Rihaana from Geeks of Color: What do you attribute SCREAM’s success to, but also what do you think without spoilers? What do you think sets this one apart from the others?

Melissa Barrera: Well, I think the movie honors the first four movies and in a very cool way. The directors Tyler and Matt, and the writers Jamie and Guy, really wanted to honor Wes Craven’s legacy and the work that’s been done because there’s a reason that the franchise has been so successful. And this is the first movie that Wes doesn’t direct. And I think what’s new is that there are new characters, obviously, there’s a new generation of characters. And, yes, we go back, and we reference and honor and pay tribute to all of the great things that are characteristic of the SCREAM franchise. But also, I feel like, in this fifth movie, there are things and characters like we’ve never seen before in the franchise. And that’s going to be something new. I also think that the fans are going to be satisfied and happy because of the way that we’re honoring the previous films, but also, it’s going to give them a fresh take on it, and hopefully, invite a whole new generation of SCREAM fans to join and to be part of the fandom and love these movies. And maybe for someone that’s young, to see this movie, and then think like, “Oh, I want to watch the first four.” You know, for the younger generations that maybe grew up with SCREAM.

Melissa Barrera also shared that she, “was very excited to meet David Arquette because I think he is the heart of the films. He’s personally my favorite character. And so, I was very excited to meet him and see what he’s like in real life. And he’s the best human, like just the sweetest man. The most generous the most, attentive. He’s been so great to all of us, so welcoming.”

Michelle Swope: How would any of you feel if your character turns out to be Ghostface?

Mikey Madison: I think something so cool about the SCREAM movies is that everyone is a suspect and anyone could be the killer. So, it’s exciting, reading these scripts and watching the previous movies. You’re always on your toes wondering, “Is this person the killer? Is that person a killer?” So, I think it really could be anyone.

Dylan Minnette: People may or may not have different versions of the script.

Rihaana from Geeks of Color: With all the SCREAM movies, what is going to set this one apart from the others?

Jasmin Savoy Brown: I think the cast we have is an awesome new group of actors joining the legacy cast and it’s a very diverse group of actors on so many levels, which is really exciting. We all bring such a different perspective and a different energy and approach to this world that blends seamlessly with what’s already been created, but it’ll add a fresh bit of whatever this is [laughs].

Jasmin Savoy Brown stars in Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group’s “Scream.”

The press junket continued with a conversation with Kyle Gallner, Mason Gooding, and Sonia Ammar about becoming a part of the SCREAM franchise and their thoughts on working on the new film.

Nancy from LRM online: How exciting is it to join the franchise classic franchise that you probably grew up watching?

Mason Gooding: I’m incredibly excited and maybe a tinge of intimidated, but very, very excited. That being said, whatever level of intimidation you feel entering such a prolific franchise that sort of embodies horror cinema as it stepped into that like satirical sort of realm in the 90s, each and every person on set, Radio Silence, people from Paramount, have made it feel like a natural, healthy progression of sort of additions to the story and the narrative being told. So, I really couldn’t have asked for a better experience but at least in the beginning, very scary.

Sonia Ammar: I’m so excited and so grateful and just really incredibly happy and lucky to be here and, I’m and working with all these incredibly talented people. And they’re also great people outside of their work in real life. I haven’t really felt intimidated and I think you brought this up, Mason, they don’t really put that much pressure on you. It’s just a great energy and atmosphere. We don’t feel intense pressure, even though they’re trying to make a great movie and continuation, and I think that’s because the directors are so amazing.

Kyle Gallner: Yeah, I agree. I think it’s incredibly exciting to be a part of the SCREAM franchise, such a well-known and prolific franchise. But I think there is kind of a calming thing when you get here and you realize how good the directors are and how well-written the script is. Iit’s like you can’t help but feel like you’re in good hands. And that kind of takes some of the stress off once all the pieces come together and you’re like, “Oh okay, so this is what we’re making.”

Rihaana from Geeks of Color: What’s your favorite scary movie? And what separates this movie from the others?

Mason Gooding: You have a favorite scary movie, Sonia [laughs]? I keep saying I’m a big baby and when it comes to blood and gore, I’m usually very hesitant to indulge but I love the Insidious franchise and I love the way that the paranormal influence sort of carries the rest of the story. That being said, now that you know what I usually like, SCREAM, to me, was the one foray into gore and slasher that I was able to stomach as a child that carried through into my adulthood. Now SCREAM is this sort of bar for me, and I compare each addition to each slasher horror film to that that was set by the original.

Sonia Ammar: I agree with you on that one, Mason. I’m the same way. I really enjoy films that even though they aren’t most definitely a horror film, but I really enjoy films that kind of bring different genres together and have contrast and different moments that are not just gore and dark. This is kind of how real life is when horrible things happen, or great things happen. There’s everything in between there’s not just the horrible. There are moments of laughter and comedy and this and that, and I think that’s why it’s going to be so enjoyable to watch. That there are so many different genres and elements of this that make it fun and make it appealing to people who like different genres and people of different ages.

Kyle Gallner: I think what’s interesting about this one and Sonia was kind of hitting on it, is like I like that this world is a weird world. The SCREAM films are like a horror movie within a horror movie. There’s that bizarre meta thing where they touched on the fact that they understand the rules of a horror movie while they themselves are living the horror movie. lt’s really a bizarre take on the genre. And I think that it’s an interesting take on where things are culturally at the time and so I like that it really kind of blasts you off to a couple of different places. And I think that’s kind of unique to the SCREAM franchise, whereas the Halloween movies, it’s that slasher film and this dude’s going around and he’s cutting people up. The SCREAM movies are a little heavier, I think, in terms of the way they treat things. But that being said, I love the Halloween franchise. I love that 28 Days Later is like comfort food for me. I know there are arguments like is Seven a horror movie? I love Seven. I love the arguments about is The Silence of the Lambs a horror movie. And I love stuff like The Descent. Aliens is one of my favorite films of all time. I think the horror genre is such a cool space to live in you know, whether it’s like Sci-Fi or straight-up slasher, or just something super brutal and dark like Martyrs. I think there’s kind of something for everybody.

Kyle Gallner stars in Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group’s “Scream.”

Patrick from Comicbook.com: For Kyle, you have some Wes Craven pedigree in your career from Red Eye and The Nightmare on Elm Street reboot. I’m curious what specifically, Wes Craven might have meant to you, as a filmmaker or storyteller or as a creative force?

Kyle Gallner: I think Wes Craven kind of is, he’s a household name for a reason. He’s great at what he does. Even just looking at the first SCREAM movie, being able to capture the tone in a film like that, that he captured, it’s not something everybody can do. To be able to capture that mix of humor, fear genuine horror mixed with really great kills. It’s shot extremely well, all the way down to picking your cast. He had a gift of there’s definitely something special there, there was something special with him. And when I did Red Eye, also just speaking to him as a person. He was incredibly kind, incredibly gracious with his time. I wasn’t even a big part. That’s my first movie when I moved out to California. And I’d actually met him a couple of times. I read for him another time, that’s a whole other story [laughs]. That was this other movie, and I got the script when I wasn’t supposed to have the script. And he was like, “Kyle, why do you have my script?” I was like, “I don’t know! [laughs]. I thought I was supposed to.” And he was always very, very kind every time and even like, years later when I read for him again, even though I was a small part of Red Eye, he remembered me. He was a nice, genuine man who was just incredibly talented with what he did.

Michelle Swope: I know you guys probably don’t know, but how would you feel if your character turned out to be Ghostface?

Mason Gooding: All I could say is that the amount of legacy behind that prolific and iconic character is immense. So, for any actor, I have to imagine it comes with a cavalcade, an immense sense, and an overwhelming amount of desire to pay respect and also to be bringing something new to it.

Kyle Gallner: I think there’s also something to the fact that it’s like, either way, whichever way this goes for anybody, I think anybody would be fucking psyched to be Ghostface, even though it would be a tremendous amount of responsibility. But I also think there’s something equally as cool to being just massacred by Ghostface. I think you’re lucky either way you cut it just to be a part of the franchise that either, you know, it’s like a badge of honor either way. I think it’s just exciting for everybody to be here and whichever way you cut it. No pun intended. [laughs] I think it’s, either way, I think it’s a win.

Mason Gooding: Well said.

Sonia Ammar: Yeah, agreed. It’s like both maybe, it’s getting to the end of the movie alive and getting a great kill scene. Both of them are so cool. I don’t know which one I would prefer, to be honest. But yeah, either way, it’s an honor to survive or if you are Ghostface, or if you get killed, whatever it is. It’s just to be a part of it.


SCREAM will be in theaters on January 14, 2022, from Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group!

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