Neve Campbell Still Part Of Scream 6 Despite Walking Away From Sequel
Though Neve Campbell has opted out of Scream 6, her Sydney Prescott character will still be mentioned
Neve Campbell might have opted out of Scream 6 but Sydney Prescott will be mentioned. According to Variety, the actress walked away from the latest sequel because she felt she was offered an unfair salary. Actress Jenna Ortega, who played the main character, Tara Carpenter, in 2022’s Scream said there will be plenty of references to Sydney and that Neve Campbell’s absence was felt on-set.
Sydney may be mentioned throughout the movie, but Neve Campbell announced on June 6 that she would not be playing the character after her salary offer, which she felt was too low for the lead of a six-film franchise. She further claimed that the offer would have been higher if made to a male lead. She spoke very strongly about her value to a franchise that has been active for over 25 years.
As Neve Campbell told People magazine, “I honestly don’t believe that if I were a man and had done five installments of a huge blockbuster franchise over 25 years, that the number that I was offered would be the number that would be offered to a man. And in my soul, I just couldn’t do that.”
Scream 6 was the first time a movie in the franchise would not be starring Neve Campbell. Audiences have watched the character grow from a terrified victim into a strong female protagonist over the course of the previous five movies. The first Scream movie was released in late 1996 and co-starred Courtney Cox, David Arquette, Rose McGowan, Matthew Lillard, and Skeet Ulrich in a slasher mystery surrounding a high-school-aged Sydney Prescott and the sensational murder of her mother.
The franchise Neve Campbell helped create is as much a spoof of slasher horror films as it is a slasher horror film in its own right. During the 1970s and early 1980s, the likes of Michael Myers, Leatherface, Freddy Kruger, and Jason Voorhies stalked movie screens all over the world, terrifying audiences with gore and jump scares. As the 80s wore on, these characters grew campy and the movies became laced with comedy, repetitive resurrections, and stretched plots.
When Scream was released, the slasher genre was revitalized by its fresh take on horror as well as its willingness to laugh at itself. The original film is rife with references to a variety of horror films, calling out horror movie cliches as easily as it killed Neve Campbell’s friends. It also managed to spawn its own tropes and give audiences a new look at a genre that could have become stale without the Scream franchise.
As its principal character and chief “final girl,” Neve Campbell was the centerpiece around which the story revolved, and it is entirely fair of her to question the studio’s value of her work. Scream 6 stars Jenna Ortega and Jasmin Savoy Brown have both stated that they respect Neve Campbell’s decision to walk away from the movie if she didn’t think she was being fairly compensated. Jasmin Savoy Brown added that the difficulties of being a woman extend to any field that a woman thinks she deserves more.
Still, the stars of Scream 6 have teased that it will be the bloodiest, goriest incarnation of the franchise yet. Paramount Pictures is releasing Scream 6 on March 31, 2023, with Courtney Cox returning and other co-stars including Melissa Barrera and Mason Gooding. Audiences may miss Neve Campbell in the franchise, but Sydney Prescott is alive and well even if she will be off-screen for this installment.