The question of whether or not we'll ever see Scream 5 in theaters has been bouncing back and forth for a while now with no clear answer, but one Scream project that is definitely in development is a TV pilot based on the franchise that was ordered by MTV earlier this year. There had been talk of a Scream TV series before, but the pilot order was the first clear sign that things were moving ahead.
When it was announced that the pilot episode would be written by Dan Dworkin and Jay Beattie (Criminal Minds), we hazarded a guess that the show might use a police procedural format as a way to approach the idea of serial killers. That might still turn out to be the case, but the latest comment on the matter from Harvey Weinstein suggests that MTV's Scream may be something very different entirely.
According to BlairWitch.de, Weinstein was asked about the possibility of pursuing a fifth movie in the Scream series and simply replied that it was in the hands of his brother, Bob Weinstein, and that Harvey himself is, "begging him to do the movie and just end it. We've milked that cow." He also told the press that there would be no overlap between the MTV show and the film franchise, and that the TV series is instead meant to represent a new beginning and also to pursue a supernatural direction.
The iconic image of the Scream franchise has always been the Ghostface mask donned by the various killers in the film - a cheap Halloween mask in the movie canon that subsequently became a cheap Halloween mask in real life. Just like an episode of Scooby-Doo, however, the mask would always come off to reveal an ordinary (aside from a little homicidal insanity) living human being hiding behind it.
Hardcore Scream fans might balk at the idea of introducing actual ghosts into what is traditionally a horror franchise grounded in reality - though admittedly a reality formed by a meta-commentary on the nature of slasher movies. However, launching a series with the Scream name but a very different tone and direction probably makes a lot more sense than trying to make what worked in the movies function in a TV show as well.
It's worth noting that MTV has already created a successful supernatural series with a very loose tie-in to a "horror" movie in Teen Wolf. Teen Wolf is kind of an inverse Trojan horse; based on its mere concept and outward appearance it should by all rights be terrible, but instead has been pretty consistently well-written throughout its three seasons despite not having much at all to do with a comically hairy basketball star. It could probably be argued that the Scream movies are slightly better source material than Teen Wolf, but that doesn't mean that the TV show can't be something very different.
Do you think including the supernatural is a betrayal of the Scream spirit, or is it just what the TV show needs to distinguish itself from the aging movie franchise?
We'll keep you updated on MTV's plans for Scream, including any announcement of casting or an air date for the pilot.