Scream: Kevin Williamson reveals eerie inspiration behind iconic Drew Barrymore scene

Opening sequence to 1996 film involves a high school student being menaced over the phone by a killer

Adam White
Monday 18 October 2021 09:38
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Kevin Williamson on the iconic opening of Scream

Scream screenwriter Kevin Williamson has revealed the eerie inspiration behind the film’s iconic opening scene.

The 1996 horror movie begins with high school student Casey – played by Drew Barrymore – being menaced over the phone by a mask-wearing killer. In the scene, the killer asks Casey a number of trivia questions about famous slasher movies from history, with Casey bungling the identity of the killer in the first Friday the 13th.

In a new behind-the-scenes interview for the 4K UHD + Blu-ray edition of the film, Williamson has revealed that the scene came into being thanks to his own experience of being alone in a house armed with a knife.

“I was house-sitting for a friend of mine and I walk into the family room and I see that the window’s open, and I’m freaked out,” Williamson recalls. “So I go and I get a butcher knife and I start walking around the house and I call up my friend on the phone and [say] ‘I think someone’s in the house.’”

Williamson elaborates on the rest of the spooky story in the exclusive clip above.

The screenwriter – who created the TV series Dawson’s Creek in the wake of Scream – also revealed that the 1996 film served as his “love letter” to Halloween. Williamson said that the classic John Carpenter movie – starring Jamie Lee Curtis as a babysitter stalked by a masked murderer – made him want to be a screenwriter.

Last week (12 October), the first trailer was unveiled for the forthcoming Scream, a reboot of the franchise in which beleaguered heroine Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) is once again thrown into a murderous crisis.

Scream will arrive in cinemas on 14 January, while the 4K UHD + Blu-ray version of the original Scream is available to download and keep now.

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