Scream – Script Analysis

Scream by Kevin Williamson

Unknown Draft. No Date. 105 pages

scream posterScream brought self-aware horror onto the scene with panache. The people yelling “No, don’t go in the basement alone!” were no longer confined to the theater, they were actual characters in the film. It’s a hip, punchy, scary movie filled with memorable characters that kept audiences coming back for more (3 more, at last count).

Considering how close this script mimics the final film, I’m guessing it was the shooting script (or cleaned up after the fact to closely match it). A couple missing scenes and several changed lines of dialogue were all that I could find between this and the released film.

So why read a slasher film from the mid 90s? Putting aside the whole “redefining the genre” bit, it really is an effective film. Short, mixing slasher horror seamlessly with comedic moments and even managing some social commentary along the way. I’m writing an action/comedy at the moment, with a straight up horror script in the works, so now seemed like as good a time as any to read this one. I was after the short bursts of action/description between the dialogue heavy chunks. I wanted to see how to construct something effective, scary, and yet punchy short.

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