Scream VI’s Directors Offer Silver Lining To Neve Campbell’s Departure As Sidney Prescott

Neve Campbell as Sidney in Scream
(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

It’s an exciting time to be a horror fan, as the gerne has been thriving for years now. The renaissance brought some of the best horror movies back to theaters, including Scream. The fifth movie was so successful that Scream VI was quickly ordered, and fans were recently treated to the first exciting footage. The upcoming sequel will mark the first installment of the franchise without Neve Campbell’s Sidney Prescott, but the pair of directors offered a silver lining to this disappointing news.

The generations of Scream fans out there were disappointed to learn that Neve Campbell dropped out of Scream VI shortly before its production began. This likely has added some pressure for the new sequel, which will still feature legacy characters in the form of Courteney Cox’s Gale Weathers and Hayden Panettiere’s Kirby Reed. Directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett recently spoke to EW about the highly anticipated upcoming slasher, where Gillett admitted that Campbell’s departure resulted in major changes in the script. But he found the upside of the situation saying:

We love Neve, and we're huge fans of Sidney Prescott, but it felt like there's an opportunity to really dig into this new crop of characters, and I think people will be really surprised and pleased with how successfully this movie does that. This movie's been in our lives now for quite a while, but I think that we are still consistently surprised by how rich and how interesting and deep the relationship is between the four of them in this movie.

There you have it. While it sounds like the folks at Radio Silecne would have loved to include Scream’s final girl in the new sequel, her absence did bring the opportunity to really focus in on the two sets of siblings that are at the center of its plot. And it seems like the setting of New York City is going to make the Ghostface sequences all the more terrifying.

Tyler Gillett’s comments to EW came along with the first glimpse at a new take on the Ghostface mask. But from the looks of the first teaser, there’s going to be a number of them. Namely because it seems like we’re going to be celebrating Halloween in the city. And smart money says the protagonists aren’t going to appreciate seeing that mask in places like the subway.

The last Scream movie introduced Melissa Barrera’s Sam Carpenter as the new protagonist, as well as her sister Tara, played by Wednesday actress Jenna Ortega. Along with them two other newcomers survived the movie’s events: twins Chad and Mindy Meeks-Martin (played by Mason Gooding and Jasmin Savoy Brown respectively). And it seems that we’ll be seeing new sides of these characters, and getting to know them more intimately throughout Scream VI

Jenna Ortega on the subway in Scream VI

(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

As a reminder, you can check out the first teaser for the new Scream movie below. It’s a brief clip, showing those four characters riding a crowded subway car. Tension rises as various version of Ghostface appear in the car, before Mindy is suddenly attacked. Melissa Barrera has been teasing how the new setting adds to the movie’s horror, and this first clip surely shows that.

While there’s still a ton of excitement surrounding Scream VI, it’s definitely a bummer that it’ll be the first movie without Neve Campbell. It’s hard to imagine a Scream movie without Sidney, although she’ll presumably be referenced throughout its runtime. We’ll just have to see if a new deal can be made in any future installments. Fingers crossed.

Scream VI is currently expected to arrive in theaters on March 10th, 2023. In the meantime, check out the 2023 movie release dates to plan your trips to the theater in the New Year. And the year is sure to bring plenty of more horror movies to fans. 

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.