December 20, 1996.
That was the day Wes Craven’s groundbreaking Scream grabbed the attention of every teen across the Nation. By the end of its 19-week theatrical run, and an eventually re-release, Dimension Films’ slasher raked in a disgusting $100 million (it also made an estimates $70 million internationally).
Penned by Kevin Williamson, Scream featured the young, hip cast of David Arquette, Drew Barrymore, Lisa Beach, David Booth, W. Earl Brown, Courteney Cox, Neve Campbell, Skeet Ulrich, Rose McGowan, Matthew Lillard and Jamie Kennedy. It has since swamped three sequels and a forthcoming rumored television series.
In the film that supposedly used 50 gallons of blood, “A killer known as Ghostface begins killing off teenagers, and as the body count begins rising, one girl and her friends find themselves contemplating the “Rules” of horror films as they find themselves living in a real-life one.”
The script was originally titled “Scary Movie,” which provided the jump point for the Wayans’ spoof franchise.
Tell us your Scream memories! READ MORE
I’m in a fairly severe minority when I say that I liked Scream 4. It’s better than Scream 3 and, even if it can’t hold a candle to the first two films in the franchise, I didn’t find it boring. Of course, the hospital sequence is insanely stupid and the whole film feels out of touch, but I appreciated the point it was trying to make (even if that point got fumbled badly in places).
That being said, I really don’t need to see a Scream 5. I have no idea where they’d go with it and I really don’t see the series getting anywhere near back to the relevancy it once held. It had its time and place, and I’m fine moving on from it. And Wes Craven seems sort of shocked that some if you even want one. Earlier tonight he wrote on his Twitter, “No news on ‘Scream 5′ yet. You guys really want another one?”
When I spoke to Craven last year he seemed a bit more up on the prospect of a sequel, saying that he assumed Bob Weinstein was looking for writers, but it doesn’t seem like there’s been any movement since then. Perhaps Dimension was scared off by Part 4′s paltry domestic take? It’s $38M North American gross was way lower than the $90-100M bar the franchise had grown accustomed to. Sure, it made $97M worldwide, but even that is a significant dive from its predecessors.
Personally, I don’t think the franchise can recover. What about you?
You love horror. Naturally, you want to show that love on Halloween, the one day a year when you can dress like a psychotic killer and still look relatively normal.
But beware what costume you choose.
Each character says something about you as a person which you might not feel comfortable sharing with the rest of the world. Here are just ten costumes and the secrets about you they could reveal. READ MORE
While I love all the permeations of horror to varying degrees (supernatural, hauntings, werewolves, zombies, J-horror etc…), slashers are probably my favorite sub-genre. While I can occasionally get myself in the headspace of being frightened by a poltergeist or work up enough suspension of disbelief to get on-edge during a zombie film, slashers require me to do a lot less mental projection in order to go along for the ride.
Why? Because I’m afraid of real people chasing me through the woods with knives. While it’s of course an extremely unlikely event, it’s still something of a possibility. I consider home-invasion films a branch of the slasher genre for this very reason. The reason I lock my door every night? I’m taking an active step (or empty gesture) against someone entering my home and dismantling me. It’s a far bigger concern to me than my residence being built on an ancient burial ground (though I’ll let you know if that changes the next time I move).
I also think I love slashers the most because of the nostalgia factor. They remind me of simpler times. The fact that they’re typically in rural settings holds them in stark contrast to my daily life in the city. Many of them are downright relaxing and comforting to watch in the moments when someone isn’t getting killed. Of course this is part of the point – something evil infiltrating something idyllic. It also doesn’t hurt that the 80′s were the heyday of the slasher film (obviously Scream aren’t Halloween rural or from the 80′s. But they exude a charming small town optimism that I like). I know many people who considered that era a dark time, but its cinematic depiction in these films is positively utopian compared to our current reality. Plus, there’s usually sex. That always helps.
To that end I ask, “what’s your favorite slasher film?” Mine changes daily, actually. I know that when I did my Friday The 13th Rankings I pegged Part 6 as my favorite entry in the franchise. Oddly enough I feel that Jason Lives doesn’t feel like much of a slasher to me tonally. So I’m going to keep it in the family, but go with Friday The 13th Part 2 as my favorite slasher under the criteria discussed above. Again, this changes all the time. Halloween is obviously a much, much MUCH better film, but I’m in a rural mood today.
What about you? Does your favorite slasher change day-to-day like mine does? Or is it consistently your favorite?
We have heard your cries! MANY of you felt that the The Ultimate Horror Challenge wasn’t comprehensive enough! So we included an additional 20 films that round it out a bit more. Many of these are from your suggestions! But this still isn’t a list of every horror movie ever made. And it still doesn’t contain every major work of every horror auteur (there’s still no John Carpenter’s They Live or Wes Craven’s The Last House On The Left).
The next update will be the Ultimate Horror Challenge: Final Edition – where we take your best new suggestions and use them to get up to 101 films that every horror fan should see! So in addition to your ranking, let us know which films should make the cut! Should newer fan favorites like Frozen or The Devil’s Rejects be included? Should we go back and pick up a few more old-school slashers? You’re shaping the Final 20! Discuss and vote and I’ll tally it up!
There are now 81 Films listed below the jump. Each film you’ve seen earns you 1 Point. Count out how many you’ve seen and let us know which category you fall into!
1-10 Points: Soccer Mom
11-20 Points: Mildly Adventurous
21-30 Points: Casual Fan
31-40 Points: Enthusiast
41-50 Points: Hardcore
51-60 Points: Unstable
61-70 Points: Need Meds
71-80 Points: Psychopath
81 Points: Special Circle Of Hell
Head inside to take the challenge! The films are listed in no particular order. This is NOT a ranking! READ MORE
This isn’t a list of every horror movie ever made. Nor does it contain every major work of every horror auteur (you’ll notice we didn’t include John Carpenter’s They Live or Wes Craven’s The Last House On The Left). Rather, this is a compendium of films that we feel – in one way or another – are essential viewing for every horror fan. Some are mainstream (Poltergeist), some aren’t (Cannibal Holocaust). It’s a broad sampling of key films from the genre.
But you don’t have to be a horror die-hard to take the challenge! If you’re comfortable being a “Soccer Mom”, simply clock how many of these you have (or haven’t) seen and let us know! There are 61 Films listed below the jump. Each film you’ve seen earns you 1 Point. Count out how many you’ve seen and let us know which category you fall into. You can give us your specific count in the comments or yell at us for the films we’ve left out!! The categories are:
1-10 Points: Soccer Mom
11-20 Points: Mildly Adventurous
21-30 Points: Casual Fan
31-40 Points: Hardcore
41-50 Points: Unstable
51-60 Points: Psychopath
61 Points: Special Circle Of Hell
Head inside to take the challenge! The films are listed in no particular order. This is NOT a ranking! READ MORE
For those smarty-pants who approach their horror entertainment from an academic perspective, Life Lessons from Slasher Films was released this month by Scarecrow Books, a highbrow publishing line specializing in reference works and college textbooks (and priced accordingly). Rather than attempt to compile an all-inclusive slasher-pedia like the recent Slasher Movie Book, author Jessica Robinson contrasts and compares a handful of staples from the sub-genre: Friday the 13th, Halloween, Black Christmas, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Psycho, Nightmare on Elm Street, and Scream. Drawing parallels and spinning theories, Robinson (who has penned a couple of fiction titles under the alias “Pembroke Sinclair”) draws some shrewd connections between the films, even as she occasionally stretches the boundaries of logic. Life Lessons from Slasher Films is a well-conceived think-piece, but I took some umbrage with a few of Robinson’s assertions. Some of you die-hard slasher hounds may feel the same way. The full review follows. READ MORE
I’m not sure how this is going to work. The original entries in the Scream series skewered the horror tropes of their time – along with the tropes of sequels and trilogies in general – with varying degrees of success. Now we’re getting word that there will indeed be a “Scream” TV series. It’ll be on MTV, which seems like a good fit, but what exactly will they be deconstructing? Scream 4 kind of left a lot on the table but I’m not sure any of the pieces that could be picked up are especially well suited for television. Who knows though? I could be wrong.
Per TV Line, “MTV is developing a weekly series based on the Scream film franchise, sources confirm to TVLine exclusively. Former MTV execs Tony DiSanto and Liz Gateley, who are shepherding the project under their DiGa production shingle, are on the hunt for a writer to pen the pilot. It’s unclear what role, if any, Scream auteurs Kevin Williamson and Wes Craven will have in the potential series.”
In regard to that last sentence, I’m not sure either Williamson or Craven will be back. Of course I could be wrong, but I get the picture that Williamson has been burned by this franchise quite a bit.
What about you? Would you watch a “Scream” TV series? And what does this mean for Scream 5?
A little while ago I tossed up an article about the sale of Black Rock at Sundance. In fact, it should be the piece right below this one.
Right after doing so I saw that Devin Faraci, one of my favorite critics, had already filed his review of the film over at Badass Digest so I headed over there to check it out. You can do the same by clicking here.
Now I’m gonna state in bold letters that I have not seen Black Rock. For all I know it could become my favorite movie of 2012. I don’t always agree with Devin (maybe 70% of the time), but he’s one of a handful of about 5 or 6 critics whose reviews are my “go-tos” when I’m deciding what films to spend my time or money on as a consumer (I don’t always see everything for free, especially non-horror stuff). Whether or not I ultimately agree with his take on something, he’s got a knack for thoroughly explaining the reasoning behind his reactions that’s in a language I can relate to.
So I was surprised to come across a couple lines in his piece on Black Rock that echoed something that’s been on my mind for sometime in regard to genre and people who think they’re slumming in it.
Hit the jump to see what I’m talking about. READ MORE
After seeing and reading countless interviews with Wes Craven, I can’t say that I’m surprised that he’s as genial, soft-spoken and erudite as he is. The way his more professorial qualities subvert (but don’t diminish) his status as one of the all-time horror greats is well known at this point. Still, I was more than a little apprehensive about speaking with him this morning. After all, this is the guy who gave us A Nightmare On Elm Street (along with Dream Warriors), The Hills Have Eyes, Shocker, The People Under The Stairs and of course the original Scream trilogy.
Reaching Craven on the East Coast by phone to speak about the upcoming Blu-ray/DVD release of Scream 4, I found him every bit as thoughtful, polite and engaged as I expected. Sometimes interview subjects are pleasantly surprising. In Craven’s case I simply knew I was going to be speaking with someone who not only loves their craft, but is articulate about it as well. He did not disappoint.
Obviously focussing on Scream 4, we spoke about how technology is affecting the current generation, the casting process, why the fourth film is significantly more violent than the third and much more. There’s even a potential tidbit about Scream 5 waiting for you if you get to the end.
Hit the jump to check it out!
While 99% of my time is spent finding and reporting horror news, occasionally I’ll come across something genre related that I can’t wait to share with you dear readers. (Or sometimes what I find isn’t really “news worthy,” but cool nonetheless.) Such the case with these little nuggets of awesome. (All four of these news bites feature video or images, so you’ll be checking inside for the goods.)
The coolest thing I came across this week is an “H.R. Giger/Alien” wedding cake from Jet City Cakes in Kirkland, WA. It’s bursting with delightfulness! Though, when looking at it, I just can’t help but think of the dancing alien in Spaceballs…
Here’s a segue for yah: Speaking of Alien, something incredibly stupid, but going viral, is footage from a horror fan who filmed his cat watching the Alien franchise. The video’s creator describes the cat as “enjoying” the films, but this cat looks freaked the f*ck out.
The boys over at Figure reports that Diamond Select Toys has announced the upcoming release of two new Ghostbusters statues. The first is 100 feet of angry marshmallow shrunk down to a more manageable collectible size of 7-inches. The “Ghostbusters Stay-Puft Statue” will include a light-up feature to add a pleasing glow to your collection at night. Look it this July priced at SRP of $69.99. Joining “Stay-Puft” in October will be a 7″ “Statue of Liberty.” This iconic symbol of freedom and “Ghostbusters II” ghoul-stomping vehicle also lights-up and will retail for a SRP of $69.99. But seriously, who wants to remember that? “Higher and highhhhhherrrrr.”
Another fun news brief are a slew of new never-before-seen photos from Scream 4, which come courtesy of Scream-Trilogy. They declare the images as “stunning”, I’d say they’re more intriguing (especially the pic of Sidney in the wake of a bloody massacre).
Leading up to its April 15 release, Dimension Films had director Wes Craven retooling his Scream 4. Going through various rewrites and additional photography, there was a lot that didn’t make it to theaters (as displayed in various imagery and trailers).
Inside you’ll find a list of changes from our scooper who attended the first ever test screening. While there’s no too much to report, many of the sequences were there hanging right in front of our faces….
It’s not news that Kevin Williamson had written Scream 4 as the beginning of a new trilogy, with plans already sketched out for the next two films. But after seeing the latest entry, I’m left scratching my head as to where they could go with it. I really hope this new cycle doesn’t burn itself out as quickly as the last one; there was nothing left to poke fun at by the time Scream 3 rolled around.
Wes Craven recently sat down and revealed some non-news about the continuation of the franchise – if it’s even fast-tracked given the poor reception of Scream 4 – which you can find past the break due to spoilers.
Another Scream 4 review? How about another TWO!?
Now in theaters everywhere, by clicking here you’ll now find reviews of Wes Craven’s slasher sequel from Mr. Disgusting, David Harley, and even THEoDEAD.
In addition, beyond the break you’ll find a fourth review by Maria Lewis that gives a positive spin to the latest “Scooby-Doo” adventure.
But more importantly, user reviews are NOW OPEN! Click here to write your own and tell all of Bloody Disgusting what YOU thought. I personally am dying to know…
Taking an opposing side to Dimension Films’ Scream 4, David Harley was NOT amused with Wes Craven (interview) and Kevin Williamson’s slasher sequel, in theaters tomorrow.
In fact Harley was so in “meh” about Ghostface’s return to theaters that he gave the film a whopping “this is a film” out of 5. Yikes.
Read below for his full review (or click the title for Mr. Disgusting’s thoughts), and don’t forget to return this weekend to write your own and tell all of BD what YOU thought!
Arriving in theaters this Friday, Dimension Films is going all out in promoting Wes Craven’s monstrous Scream 4 (review), which is positioned for a mega boxoffice opening.
Stars have been making their talk show rounds, debuting new clip after new clip. Inside you’ll find footage from the crappy “Jay Leno Show” where star Kristen Bell shares a look at the opening scene with Anna Paquin.
In addition, you’ll also find a clip that will bring you into the teased “Scream” haystack party where Gale (Courteney Cox) sets up a bunch of cameras to spy on the kids. Dewey (David Arquette) can see what’s going on behind her. Wink, wink.
The day is nearly here (Friday!), Wes Craven (interview) is back with Scream 4, a reinvigorating return to the franchise that took the horror genre by storm. With a few reviews arriving this week, we’ll kick it off with my positive thoughts:
“Wes Craven and screenwriter Kevin Williamson were triumphant in delivering a fresh, smart, twisted, and ultra-violent slasher sequel that will not only please fans of the original trilogy, but introduce an entire new generation of kids to horror…”
Click the title for the full review, and don’t forget to return this weekend to write your own and tell all of BD what YOU thought!
The tagline to Scream 4 may be “New Decade, New Rules”, but the “rules” for director Wes Craven have more or less remained the same over the last 40 years – keep making movies. Now 71, the still-youthful director has rarely strayed from the genre he made his name on (Music of the Heart was an anomaly, thank god), and to the delight of Scream fans everywhere he returned to the director’s chair for the highly-anticipated fourth installment, reuniting with original cast members Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox Arquette, and David Arquette to bring to life a new Kevin Williamson-scripted tale of tongue-in-cheek mayhem.
B-D’s Chris Eggertsen recently caught up with Craven to talk to him about the new sequel, with the director giving insight into the process of updating the franchise for a new generation while keeping true to the tone of the first three movies, deciding how much blood was too much, and taking on the much-publicized additional photography that followed an early test screening. See inside for the full interview – and lest you forget, Scream 4 opens everywhere on April 15th.
In this fresh clip from Wes Craven’s Scream 4 star Hayden Panettiere chats with Emma Roberts’ annoying ex-boyfriend, who ends up being the notorious Ghostface killer. Unfortunately the clip was recorded off a TV with an Android, but hey, it beats nothing.
In addition, a hilarious article was posted over at The Herald in Australia where mothers at Albert Park primary say their children are spooked by the enormous Scream 4 poster that towers over their school. It features the masked “Ghostface”, an evil knife-wielding killer.
This story is HILARIOUS considering how many kids run around wearing “masks” during Halloween. Do these psycho, overprotective parents lock their kids in the basement on October 31? Cry me a friggin’ river. Full story here.
We’ve got a few more goodies from Wes Craven’s Scream 4 starting with a brand new clip that aired on NBC. It features a scene where Neve Campbell and Emma Roberts’ characters are attacked by the illustrious Ghostface. In addition, you’ll also find yet another TV Spot entitled “Reveal”.
Additionally, the world premiere of Scream 4 takes place this coming Monday, Aprill 11 and will be broadcast LIVE online, starting at 6:30 PM PST. The player is embedded below for your ease.
“Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), now the author of a self-help book, returns home to Woodsboro on the last stop of her book tour. There she reconnects with Sheriff Dewey (David Arquette) and Gale (Courtney Cox), who are now married, as well as her cousin Jill (Emma Roberts) and her Aunt Kate (Mary McDonnell). Unfortunately Sidney’s appearance also brings about the return of Ghostface, putting Sidney, Gale, and Dewey, along with Jill, her friends, and the whole town of Woodsboro in danger.”
It’s a Scream 4 extravaganza as we’ve got all sorts of goodies leading you up until next week’s release (April 15).
First, and the most exciting in my opinion, is the brand new cover for Entertainment Weekly, which features good ol’ Ghostface! It’s rare when mainstream media gives horror this much love; only good things can come of it. You can watch a video of the photo shoot from set here.
Included in the article, screenwriter Kevin Williamson opens up about the on set turmoil: “Everyone was second-guessing everything, because everyone wanted it to be so perfect,” Williamson recalls. His arguments with Weinstein intensified over the months and ultimately came to a head. “Oh, I got in a big fight with Bob,” says Williamson. “We got into a massive fight creatively, and we hugged it out and then we moved on.”
Also, beyond the break you can dig on a fourth clip that features a bit of death, alongside two new TV Spots.
Next week Bloody Disgusting will bring you an exclusive interview with director Wes Craven, with the official review on Wednesday.
While the domestic website leaves some room for improvement, BD reader ‘Joseph M.’ pointed us over to the official Canadian website for Wes Craven’s Scream 4 that’s everything you hoped for.
The site celebrates the franchise looking back at the rules, characters and much, much more. Enjoy it here.
In theaters April 15, “Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), now the author of a self-help book, returns home to Woodsboro on the last stop of her book tour. There she reconnects with Sheriff Dewey (David Arquette) and Gale (Courtney Cox), who are now married, as well as her cousin Jill (Emma Roberts) and her Aunt Kate (Mary McDonnell). Unfortunately Sidney’s appearance also brings about the return of Ghostface, putting Sidney, Gale, and Dewey, along with Jill, her friends, and the whole town of Woodsboro in danger.”
With anticipation building for the April 15th release of Dimension Films’ Scream 4 – the latest entry in the top-grossing slasher franchise after more than ten years of silence – B-D reporter Chris Eggertsen and a horde of other journalists crowded into a conference room at West Hollywood’s Mondrian Hotel this week to engage in a Q&A session with director Wes Craven, returning cast members Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox Arquette, and David Arquette, and new additions Emma Roberts, Hayden Panettiere, Rory Culkin, and Anthony Anderson, to discuss their involvement in the massively-hyped new sequel.
Topics covered included the reasons behind revisiting the franchise after such a long absence, updating the rules and conventions of the series for a modern audience, and how the ill-fated town of Woodsboro has changed in the decade-and-a-half since the original massacre. See inside for the full report.
In 1996, the horror master Wes Craven unleashed Scream, a slasher movie aimed at a whole new generation of teenage movie-goers. Airing this coming Wednesday is Biography Channel’s “Inside Story: Scream”, which features all-new interviews with Wes Craven, Neve Campell, David Arquette, Jamie Kennedy, Rose McGowan and Matthew Lillard.
The doc comes from the creative forces behind the critically-acclaimed Nightmare on Elm Street retrospective, Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy. Producer/Director Daniel Farrands (Halloween 6, The Girl Next Door, The Haunting in Connecticut) and Producer/Writer Thommy Hutson have reteamed once again to explore everything that made Wes Craven’s postmodern shocker Scream, the definitive horror blockbuster of the 1990s.
Inside you’ll find the promo.