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After the rave reviews and box office success of Scream (aka Scream 5), it's no surprise that a sixth movie in the Wes Craven-created horror film series is already on the way, with its release date already set for March 31, 2023.
And just like with the previous movie, directing duo Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett (Ready or Not) will be returning to helm the production — currently referred to as Scream 6 — which they've already written a script for, despite having planned to make the most recent Scream a standalone production. And they won't be the only recognizable names returning to Woodsboro next spring, as it looks like Gale Weathers (Courtney Cox) might be back in action again following the events of Scream. So perhaps Sidney Prescott (original Final Girl Neve Campbell) won't be too far behind either!
In any case, expectations are high as the upcoming flick goes into production. Not only does it have to follow up a "requel" that managed the difficult task of satisfying longtime fans and rebooting a lucrative franchise, but it will also have to continue to live up to the legacy of Craven's original Scream films in terms of renewed meta commentary and creatively subverted genre expectations — all while serving up brutal, heart-stopping kills in the process.
With that in mind, here's what we're hoping to see when we return to the high body count town of Woodsboro.
**SPOILER WARNING: The following contains spoilers for the most recent Scream movie, so unless a masked killer is threatening you with questions, turn away and come back after you've seen it.**
5. Bring back more familiar (Ghost) faces
One of the many, many joys of rewatching Scream 1-4 is all the familiar faces who turn up in the cast, from eventual X-Men antagonist Liev Schrieber as Cotton Weary to the soon-to-be Matrix-hopping Jada Pinkett Smith as Maureen Evans, and later American Horror Story's Emma Roberts as Jill Roberts, and even Shazam! Fury of the Gods' Adam Brody as Detective Ross Hoss. Unfortunately, given that this is a horror film universe, most of these characters end up dead — whether or not they're the killer(s).
But seeing as the latest film found a way to include the deceased Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich), it would be perfectly in theme if this next one would nod to some of the other dead folks who have donned the infamous Ghostface mask over the course of Craven's 4 films, including The Mandalorian's Timothy Olyphant. After all, it's not uncommon for killers to develop fanbases around them, like the Scream (and Stab) films show. Why not work it further into the DNA of the franchise?
And speaking of former killers who could make a return...
4. Bring back Stu Macher
The only thing really missing from the most recent film was the inclusion of Matthew Lillard's infamous co-killer — who he maintains is still alive having never died on screen — especially with so many members of the original cast returning and reprising their roles, including Ms. Casey Becker herself, as Drew Barrymore voiced the school principal. In fact, Lillard did the same thing as he lent his voice to a highly-memorable version of Ghostface that appeared in the film: the flamethrower-wielding masked killer that appeared in the Stab 8 trailer on YouTube.
Including Stu this time around would give us a chance to catch up with him and and see how the loss of both Billy and later his nephew (Kyle Galner's Vince Schneider) might have affected him. Or maybe even if he's turned over a new leaf. After all, even Billy proved to be a good influence in his own way. Perhaps he can even offer some guidance straight from the mind of a killer, as an homage to another popular serial killer, and yet another way to subvert expectations while still working within the Scream wheelhouse. (It might also offer a chance to shed some light on the homoerotic subtext some fans might have read into Stu's feelings for Billy, which would only add more nuance to the fan-favorite character.)
3. More Mindy Meeks-Martin
One of the hallmarks of a Scream movie is the horror film buff who breaks down the genre conventions and offers tips for survival that hopefully other characters will follow. Like her uncle Randy before her, Mindy Meeks-Martin is the avatar of every horror film fan who loves these films, only living in a universe where the events of a slasher film are everyday occurrences. However, what makes Mindy particularly appealing as a character is not only Jasmin Savoy Brown's (Yellowjackets) winning performance as the movie buff half of the Meeks-Martin twins, but also the fact that up until recently, it's been rare to see a queer woman of color fit this specific archetype, which makes it a refreshing change of pace from most other films. Not unlike Netflix's recent Fear Street trilogy.
While she and her brother Chad (Mason Gooding) both survived the bloodbath of Scream 5, there's a good chance that this next movie could be their last, as their uncle also met his demise in Scream 2. As Mindy herself would note, this franchise likes to play with audience expectations, and she's proven pretty popular with audiences, much like Randy himself. And some significant characters have already wound up dead, so it's not too far a stretch to think that Ghostface might come after Chad and Mindy yet again. There's no telling whose time will soon be up in Woodsboro. Scream 6 might even prove to be the end of the road for their mother, Martha (Heather Matarazzo).
2. The return of Sam and Tara
Not only was it refreshing to see a pair of Final Girls, it was an interesting twist to have Sam (Melissa Barrera) have a relationship with Billy Loomis herself, even if it turns out he's her biological father. Tara (Jenna Ortega, Wednesday) gave Sam a connection back to the town (and truth) she was trying so hard to avoid, while also serving as her Gale of sorts, as the two fight to support each other and save themselves from Ghostface's repeated attempts on their lives.
In fact, Tara both surviving Ghostface's initial phone call and attack was a nice flip on what fans have come to expect from the opening moments of a Scream film, but her having a direct connection to Sam also proved a nice change as they were both more than aware of the town's history and Billy and Stu's legacy over all these years. It's more than likely one of the sisters may not make it past this next film, but with their familiarity with both horror films in general and Woodsboro's dark past, the franchise rests on more than capable shoulders, ready to carry us into the next iteration of whatever Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillett have planned.
1. More Sidney and Gale
It just isn't a Scream movie unless Sidney Prescott makes an appearance, and ditto for Gale Weathers. What's great about Scream 6 is that it offers us a chance to catch up with both characters following Dewey's death and to see how they're both coping with the aftermath. It also lets us see more of their new lives, including letting us meet Sidney's daughters. Given the impact her mother's life and her actions had on Sidney's own life, it will be interesting to see how Sidney herself has taken to being a mom. And also what her partner is like, as we never got the chance to meet them on screen, which again leaves plenty of room for Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillett to play with expectations.
As for Gale, perhaps she'll channel her grief into her book about Dewey, which in turn, might open the door for a guest appearance by David Arquette in YouTube video or even podcast form, not unlike the VHS tape Randy left his friends to guide them through surviving a trilogy, which these new movies could well turn into. What's interesting to note is that neither Sidney nor Gale was too phased by the latest round of slashers in Scream, which is no doubt born from their surviving the many that came after them; though it might impact how they go up against the next few that might crop up, if they do manage to survive them, of course. Granted, after Dewey, perhaps this is up in the air as well.
Scream 6 is slated to hit cinemas on March 31, 2023.