Scream 4 got off to a relatively modest start at the box office in its opening weekend, but experienced a pretty huge drop-off over the Easter holiday frame. That news left many a fan of the horror franchise wondering: what exactly does that mean for Scream 5 – and the future of the series in general?

Wes Craven has said in the past that he’s up for directing another Scream trilogy; however, with the fourth flick in the series underperforming at the box office, that doesn’t look likely to happen. Here’s the more disconcerting question for Ghostface fans: Does that mean the franchise could eventually end up being rebooted?

The overall critical reception for Scream 4 seems by and large mixed (it currently has a 57% rating over at Rotten Tomatoes), though most people seem to agree that it’s an improvement on the last Scream sequel. Be that as it may, money talks in Hollywood, and Moviehole says it has been informed by some of the folks who work at Dimension Films that “the ‘Scream’ franchise will likely end here, at least for the moment.”

E! Online also has this less-than-comforting quote from box office analyst Jeff Block, with regards to the future of the meta-horror series:

“If ‘Scream 4′ proved anything other than that irony is on its deathbed, it’s that horror reboots have a better chance of survival in the current cinematic marketplace than continuing sagas. If there is a ‘Scream 5′, expect it to be re-titled ‘Scream’, and don’t expect David Arquette, Courteney Cox or Neve Campbell to return unless it’s in a cameo—in the form of a body bag.”

If there’s a type of genre movie that’s prone to being rebooted nowadays (besides comic book films, that is) it’s that of the horror pic – especially those of the slasher variety (see: Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, Halloween, etc.). The overabundance of horror series reboots and remakes that have been released over the past decade was even used as a punchline of sorts in Scream 4. That just makes the possibility of a Scream reboot all the more ironic.

Given how the Scream franchise has become increasingly self-aware and self-reflexive with each passing movie, I can already imagine how a reboot would continue that trend. It would probably contain a whole load of reference to and discussions about the rules of a horror franchise reboot, and how they tend to be “grittier” and more violent than their predecessors. I leave it to your discretion as to whether or not that sounds like a good idea.

As for me: I’m perfectly content with the idea of Scream 4 being the last entry in the franchise. Enough people seem to have gotten their fill of hearing sly cracks about the horror genre and watching Ghostface pull off cleverly-contrived kills at this point – and stopping now would allow the series to go out on a higher note than it did over a decade ago with Scream 3. Not that Hollywood cares about that, but still…

How about it – should there be a Scream 5? A Scream reboot? Or is it time to lay this franchise to rest?

Source: E! Online, Moviehole