On December 18, 1996, the world premiere of Wes Craven Scream ”took place.|
Today the title of the film is associated with a successful franchise, but in the mid-90s, few believed that " Scream " had such a bright future. The slasher genre was far from the best of times, which is why many critics were quick to predict the project Craven a failure in the box office. Particularly distinguished was the edition Variety , which even before the release of the film on the screens used the term "Dead on arrival" in relation to it.
To spite all the ill-wishers, " Scream " has won cult status among horror fans, won the title of the best film of the year at the MTV awards ceremony, presented the world with an incredibly colorful movie fancier, became the basis for three sequels and a successful television series, and also tripled the revenues of telephone operators for the provision of Caller ID service.
LostFilm.INFO brings to your attention the most interesting facts about the creation of " Scream ", which celebrated its 20th anniversary yesterday.
The idea for the film came to aspiring screenwriter Kevin Williamson when he heard about the crimes of Danny Rolling, who raped and killed several students from the city of Gainesville. “I once saw a TV show that was dedicated to the Gainesville Ripper , recalls Kevin . -I was terribly scared by this story, and during the commercial break I heard a strange noise in the house. Going out into the living room, I saw the window wide open and was even more frightened, because I could not remember if it had been open before. I rushed to the kitchen, where I first armed myself with a knife, and then began frantically to dial the number of my good friend. He immediately asked if I had reviewed horror films, but I was not at all laughing. I had nightmares all night long
The very next morning, Kevin wrote an 18-page story about a girl who receives a phone call from a mysterious maniac. Williamson intended to rework it into the opening episode of the movie called " Scary Movie ", but could not think of a further course of events. After some time, he preferred to switch his attention to the script for the film "Kill Mrs. Tingle". Williamson found a buyer for it, but was unable to receive the full royalties, as the project soon landed on the shelf. To somehow make ends meet, Kevin was forced to return to the story of the atrocities of the murderer, nicknamed Ghost Face . In search of inspiration, the screenwriter decided to try to work to the soundtrack to the famous slasher "Halloween". The experiment should be considered extremely successful, since Williamson managed to finish writing the text " Scary Movie " in just three days. To increase the chances of his script for success, Kevin decided to accompany it with plot sketches of two potential sequels at once.
Williamson quite colorfully described the actions of the bloodthirsty maniac, which made his agent even think that no Hollywood film company would fall for a script with such a degree of cruelty. However, the plot of the film turned out to be good enough for such studios as Paramount Pictures , Universal Pictures and others to join the fight for the rights to " Scary Movie " Morgan Creek Productions . One rate outperformed the other, and soon only two companies remained in the contenders for the title of a platform for the future horror. One of them offered more money, but Williamson agreed to sell his script for $ 400,000 to Dimension Films . The thing is that Bob and Harvey Weinstein's firm gave Kevin a guarantee that " Scary Movie " will not repeat the fate of his previous project. By the way, after the collaboration with Williamson turned out to be a success, the bosses of Dimension decided to buy out the rights to his very first script. Kill Mrs. Tingle was released in 1999, but failed to replicate the success of the film about a serial killer wearing a ghost mask.
According to one popular version, the idea to rename the film came to the brothers Weinstein when they heard Michael Jackson's song “ Scream ” on the radio on their way to work. However, the new name did not make the desired impression on many actors and crew members. "The original title seemed like a much better option back then," said Jamie Kennedy, who starred in Randy Meeks . -Just imagine inviting your friends to the theater: "Hey, would you like to watch Scary Movie ?"" It is curious that such a catchy name was then used by the creators of the comedy film of 2000, the main object of the parody of which was the heroes of " Scream ".
When Bob Weinstein carefully reread the first draft of the text, he found that no one was killed in it for several dozen pages. Then Williamson had to edit not only the title page, but also the lion's share of the script. “ Bob called me and said,“ Kevin , we can have a long time in the film during which there will be no corpses on the screen. I don't care who they become, the main thing is to get rid of one of the characters "", - the scriptwriter recalls. As we now know, Kevin chose the headmaster. The screenwriter managed to kill two birds with one stone: he not only fulfilled the wish of Weinstein , but also found an elegant way to solve the problem with the film's decoupling. The initial version of the script did not very clearly explain the reason for the students leaving the party. In the revised text, the extra heroes decided to leave Stu Mayher's house to look at the headmaster's body.
Also Kevin could not decide for a long time whether it makes sense to explain the reason for the maniac's insanity. On the one hand, the lack of clear motivation made the antagonist even more terrifying. On the other hand, it seemed to the writer that the audience had a right to get answers to their questions. Cutting the Gordian knot was helped by the idea of using two assassins in the plot at once. The screenwriter outlined the motives of Billy Loomis , but did not give an intelligible explanation as to why Stu Mayher took up the knife.
Brothers Weinsteins dreamed of inviting Wes Craven to the director's chair of the film. To their disappointment, the director chose to say no to Dimension Films . Craven explained his decision by his desire to distance himself from the horror genre. After years of horror films, Wes was determined to start making films that the whole family could watch. As a result, Dimension began to consider Danny Boyle, George A. Romero, Sam Raimi and Robert Rodriguez.
However, none of these directors aroused the trust of Kevin Williamson - the scriptwriter was embarrassed that all applicants for the steering project were planning to focus on the comedic component of the plot. Fortunately for the captious author, Craven did agree to direct the film. Fans so often confessed to him their love for the films "The Hills Have Eyes" and "A Nightmare on Elm Street" that he chose not to change the genre that brought him worldwide fame. The final decision to board The Scream was made by Wes when he learned that Drew Barrymore was going to star in the film.
Drew liked the script of “ Scream ” so much that she contacted its producers herself. In those days slashers were considered category B films, which is why many movie stars tried to bypass them. Horror creators had to invite little-known artists to collaborate, but Scream helped to finally change this tradition. As soon as it became known that the studio Dimension got a representative of the famous acting dynasty for the role of Sidney Prescott , " Scream " became one of the most talked about projects in Hollywood ... As a result, with a rather modest $ 14 million budget, its creators were able to replenish the cast of performers with several bright stars of the mid-90s at once.
Joaquin Phoenix and Ben Affleck were nominated for the role of Billy Loomis , but the casting experts chose Skeet Ulrich. A significant role in their choice was played by the fact that the actor was remarkably similar to the young Johnny Depp, who played Craven in " A Nightmare on Elm Street ".
David Arquette was initially considered for the role of Loomis , but after reading the script, the actor wanted to play Dewey Riley . In the text, the sheriff's deputy was described as a muscular macho, but Craven found the new interpretation of the image interesting. Arquette gave his character so much charm that during a test run of Scream , viewers were extremely disappointed by the death of Dewey . Craven had to go along with the fans and use a spare take in the ending of the film, in which the police officer is sent to the hospital.
Randy Meeks could have been played by Breckin Meyer and Jason Lee, but the director insisted on the candidacy of Jamie Kennedy , who managed to amuse him during the final round of screen tests. The image of Stu could have been tried on by Freddie Prinze Jr., not Matthew Lillard. Surprisingly, the latter got into the project quite by accident. One day he decided to take his girlfriend to screen tests in some other film. As luck would have it, they took place in the same building where the cast of " The Scream " were watched. Matthew was spotted by casting director Lisa Beach, who advised him to look into the selection for the Craven project.
For the role of journalist Gail Weathers , the studio wanted to get a famous actress. The casting experts invited Brooke Shields and Janine Garofalo to audition, but Courtney Cox ended up playing the role. Interestingly, at first the producers did not consider the star of the sitcom "Friends" ( Friends ) seriously, believing that viewers would associate the actress with the image of the good-natured Monica Geller . Courtney managed to convince Craven that she is quite capable of playing an unscrupulous reporter.
With only five weeks left before the start of filming, the filmmakers had to urgently look for a new lead actress. Due to force majeure, Drew Barrymore could not find several weeks in her filming schedule to work on " Scream ". However, the actress had already become so attached to the project that she decided to offer her candidacy for the role of Casey Baker .
“ Drew suddenly announced that she wanted to play the girl number one, - recalls producer Carey Woods. -We were incredibly surprised, because Casey should have been gutted on page eighteen. Drew replied that the murder of her heroine will let viewers know that no one is immune from death in this film. At the same time, she kindly agreed to participate in the advertising campaign “ Scream ” as if she remained our key star”.
The producers had only a few weeks to find a new performer for the role of Sidney . They negotiated with Reese Witherspoon, Brittany Murphy, Melissa Joan Hart and many other actresses, but Craven decided to opt for Neve Campbell. The director has dreamed of working with her ever since the first time he saw her on the TV series "Party of Five" ( Party of Five ). As a result, the very first major role in the film career of Campbell elevated her to the horror hall of fame.
Initially, they wanted to work on the film in Vancouver. Filming in Canada would have saved Dimension about $ 1 million , but Wes Craven believed that only in California he would be able to find locations typical of a typical American town. The director even had to threaten to leave the project so that the Weinsteins finally agreed to set up a site in the United States.
Curiously, the Ghost Face mask was completely accidentally discovered by the horror team while searching for filming locations. She hung on the wall of a house intended for filming interior scenes. A photograph of the find was urgently sent to the bosses of the film company. Soon, the filmmaker received a reply that the props " Scream " would have to slightly change its appearance so that the studio did not receive a claim for copyright infringement, but in general it was very appropriate.
Work on several scenes was to take place on the territory of a high school in the California city of Santa Rosa. When only a few days were left before filming, the board of trustees of the educational institution unexpectedly broke off the deal with the creators of the tape. School board members thought it was a comedy, but as soon as they read the script for " Scream ", they found it too violent. The Craven team had to urgently move the filming to the Sonoma Community Center. During the editing stage, a special section for gratitude in the final credits was adorned with the phrase “Filmmakers do not express gratitude to the board of trustees of the Santa Rosa school.
Since Drew Barrymore couldn't devote a lot of time to working on Scream , Craven chose to start filming with the film's opening sequence. All scenes with the actress were filmed in just five days.
The voice of Ghost Face was presented by the then little-known voice actor Roger L. Jackson. It was originally planned that his services would be needed exclusively on the set of the film. The producers intended to duplicate the maniac at the post-production stage, but Roger got used to the image so successfully that the creators of the picture did not have to look for a replacement. Craven did not want the main cast members to associate Gustface 's voice with a specific person, which caused Jackson to stay away from his colleagues. Barrymore communicated with Roger in real time, as the director felt that the use of pre-recorded phrases will negatively affect the credibility of the scene of the telephone conversation with the killer.
The pursuit of realism almost played a cruel joke with the creators of the project. During the opening scene, the phone was hooked up and the local 911 operators received a call from a terrified Drew Barrymore . The actress turned out to be so convincing that they decided to immediately send a police outfit to the filming location.
To make Drew look scared and crying all the time, during the breaks between takes, Craven deliberately touched on the most painful topics in conversations. Wes quickly realized that the actress's weak point is her love of animals. The resourceful director would tell Barrymore some heartbreaking story about our younger brothers, after which he would give the command “Motor!” With a calm heart.
The creators of " Scream " made the decision to rely on practical effects rather than computer graphics. The film and KNB Effects studio team had to be smart enough to successfully shoot several extremely complex scenes. For example, in the prologue, the maniac had to hang Casey on a tree, and for this the special effects experts decided to use the anatomical body model Drew Barrymore .
The old school style helped the authors of " Scream " solve another difficult problem. Casey should have seen her boyfriend with internal organs falling out of his stomach. Craftsmen from KNB Effects built a special backless chair for actor Kevin Patrick Walls to hide behind. After that, the visual effects masters only had to seat the artificial legs and torso on the seat.
Video from the filming of the opening scene of the film ended up on the table of Bob Weinstein , who found the maniac not scary enough. He asked Craven to make a test snippet using seven other types of masks. The film crew refused to accept these conditions and even threatened to stop work on the film. Craven managed to convince the studio bosses to let him showcase a rough cut of the footage. The film's prologue was compelling enough for the Weinsteins to strike a deal with Fun World to allow Wes to use the original mask design.
In his script, Williamson did not provide a detailed description of the Ghostface costume. At first, the project team wanted the killer to fully live up to his nickname, and the costume designers sewed a white hoodie, but in it the maniac immediately began to resemble a member of the Ku Klux Klan. The idea to use a black suit came from producer Marianne Maddalena, who rightly decided that the dark color of the fabric not only does not cause unwanted associations in the audience, but also makes the image of Gustface much more sinister.
Although today the maniac is called Ghostface , a completely different nickname could have come into use. During a conversation with the Sheriff, Dewey shows the assassin's costume package, on which you can see the inscription Father Death . Fans of the film preferred to use the nickname that the villain was awarded by Tatum Riley . During the scene in the garage, Rose McGown's character said, “Please don't kill me, Mr. Gustface . I want to get into the sequel”.
For all the time of filming, only one actor of the main cast of the film managed to vilify the maniac's costume. The lucky one was Skeet Ulrich , who asked Craven to let him play in the scene when the killer sneaks up on Randy . In other cases, the suit was almost always worn by professional stuntmen. A rare exception was the fragment in which Casey hits the maniac over the head with his phone. That time, Wes Craven decided to wear the suit himself. Interestingly, the director starred in another scene - he flashed on the screens as a school janitor, dressed in a branded sweater Freddy Krueger .
At one time, Wes shot the first " A Nightmare on Elm Street ", but was forced to sell the rights to the franchise even before the film was released. His further participation in the creation of the film series was limited to work on the script for the third part and the production of the seventh. " Scream " gave him the opportunity to express his opinion about those pictures that were shot without his help. The conductor of the director's ideas was the heroine Drew Barrymore , who, during a conversation with the maniac, said that the sequels " A Nightmare on Elm Street " were terribly bad.
The authors of the slasher very skillfully ridiculed all kinds of genre cliches, but at the same time they did not forget to leave numerous Easter eggs for connoisseurs of cinema. In one scene, Tatum tells Sidney that she begins to act like a character in the films of Wes Carpenter . In such a simple way, " Scream " managed to simultaneously pay tribute to two legends of the horror world at once - John Carpenter and Craven himself.
During the filming of the tape, folding and rubber knives were used for safety reasons, but work on one of the scenes almost ended in a serious industrial injury. For the moment when Sidney inflicts Billy injections with an umbrella, a special soft pillow was attached to the chest of Skeet Ulrich . During the second blow, the tip slid over it and pierced the actor's skin. At the age of ten, Ulrich underwent heart surgery, which left a painful scar on his chest. Although the wound was not too serious, the injection caused Skeet infernal pain. It was this realistic take that made it into the final cut.
Since the party at Stu's house took place in the evening, the film crew had to work only in the dark. For this reason, the production of the episode stretched out over three long weeks. On the last day of work, members of the Craven team even received T-shirts with the words "I survived the shooting of Scene 118" as a gift. The Scream cast subsequently joked that the party was the longest night in horror history.
On set, Craven did not require the actors to adhere strictly to the script. A special talent for improvisation was noted by Matthew Lillard , thanks to which the text of " Scream " was quickly taken away into quotes. The unexpected phrase “Mom and Dad will be angry with me” in the scene of the phone conversation with Sydney seemed so funny to the director that he decided to leave it in the film. Nor did Wes reshoot that take when Stu discovered the disappearance of the pistol with the words: “Houston, we have a problem”.
Thanks to the talents of the actors and the behind-the-scenes staff, The Scream quickly grew into improvised scenes. For example, when Randy watches Halloween, he addresses Jamie Lee Curtis's character: “Turn around, Jamie !”. At the same time, he, a video rental employee, himself does not notice how a maniac sneaks up on him. The fact that the performer of the role of Randy is named Jamie Kennedy made the situation especially comic.
The final report of Gail Weathers was completed on the set. Although Courtney Cox had little time to prepare, she was able to accomplish her task in just two takes.
The original text of Kevin Williamson was not even in the scene with the animal door. Tatum was originally supposed to die after a garage door collapsed on her head. The idea to get the heroine Rose McGown to try to escape through the pet passage came from one of the screenwriter's assistants. By the way, the actress herself could well have avoided the fate of her on-screen heroine: during the filming, she discovered that she was able to squeeze through this small door.
To prevent Rose from accidentally falling from a decent height, the film crew attached her clothes to the garage door. The work on the stage was delayed, because of which the actress had to hang in the air for a couple of hours. Despite the fact that during this time McGown clawed all her hands, after filming she admitted that she had never before received so much pleasure from her work.
The film's denouement, in which Craven revealed one of the main secrets of the creators of horror films, also acquired special audience love. Billy confesses to Sidney that he and Stu used corn syrup to stage a maniac attack. It is corn syrup that is often used in filmmaking to create artificial blood. On the set of " Scream " itself, more than 150 liters of specially prepared bright red liquid were spilled.
The Film Association of America ( MPAA ) has refused to give " Shout " an age limit of R a dozen times. Wes Craven cut one gory scene after another from the film, but his brainchild was still rated NC-17 . One of the main stumbling blocks was the moment of massacre of Casey Baker . Craven decided to lie to the MPAA that he simply had no other takes on his hands, and eventually Bob Weinstein had to intervene. When the director asked the producer how he managed to get the film's R rating, he said that he only asked the members of the Association to consider “ Scream
The Dimension company decided to abandon the idea of releasing the picture on screens on Halloween, traditional for horror. Instead, The Scream premiered ahead of New Years, when family films are usually released. In the opening weekend, fans of horror films were not too willing to support the tape Craven . In its early days on-screen, Scream earned a little over $ 6 million , which made the studio even start to doubt whether it would be able to recoup its production and advertising costs. However, soon good word spread about the project, thanks to which he was able to show excellent endurance at the box office. Suffice it to say that in many cinemas of the country, viewers continued to scream in horror for another long eight months.
Scream finished its journey at the world box office with $ 173 million , which allowed it to take 15th place in the list of highest grossing films in 1996.
The Topic of Article: Shout is 20!.