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One of the most taxing things about being a fan of horror movies is having to wait for the next installment of your new favorite franchise, but, that is not the case with the Fear Street movies on Netflix. Inspired by the young adult book series by Goosebumps author R.L. Stine, a three parts of this chilling trilogy (one taking place in the mid-1990s, the second during the dawn of the slasher era, and the finale in the time of witch trials) are being made available to stream within one week of each other. The Fear Street cast (some of which appear in each installment) also boasts an impressive variety of up-and-coming young stars and familiar faces, such as this actress who might be on her way to joining the Scream Queens Hall of Fame.
Kiana Madeira (Deena Johnson/Sarah Fier) - 1994, 1978, 1666
Deena, the central heroine of Fear Street Part One: 1994 and an important character of the subsequent films too, is one of the first leading roles for Kiana Madeira, but not her first introduction to horror after starring in the Facebook watch original Sacred Lies and Disney Channel’s My Babysitter’s a Vampire series (if you want to count that as horror). She is also no stranger to literary adaptations after guest starring on The Flash (one of The CW’s most popular DC TV shows) in 2018 and becoming a series regular on Netflix’s Trinkets (based on the book by Kristen Smith) the following year. Another book-to-screen project is in Madeira’s future, having joined the cast of the After movies series for its next installments, After We Fell and After Ever Happy.
Olivia Scott Welch (Samantha Fraser/Hannah Miller) - 1994, 1978, 1666
Also a young veteran of YA book adaptations and the horror genre is Olivia Scott Welch, who killed both of those birds with one stone before playing Sam in the Fear Street movies in 2021 as the main character of the Amazon Prime original series Panic, based on creator Lauren Oliver’s novel. Earlier, she, technically, joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe with a guest appearance on Hayley Atwell’s short-lived Agent Carter series after earning a recurring role on Modern Family Season 7 as Manny Delgado’s “fetching” study partner. Welch became a member of the Netflix family in 2019 when she starred on a few episodes of the platform’s true crime miniseries Unbelievable opposite former Last Man Standing cast member Kaitlyn Dever and made her feature film debut in the indie college comedy Shithouse in 2020.
Benjamin Flores Jr. (Josh Johnson/Henry) - 1994, 1978, 1666
Playing the young expert of all things fearful in the Fear Street movies, Josh, is Benjamin Flores Jr, who rose to fame at age 7 as rapper Lil’ P-Nut - earning him his acting debut in 2011’s Happy Feet Two as a rapping penguin. His first taste of “horror” came on the sitcom The Haunted Hathaways on Nickelodeon (which would later cast him on another show called Game Shakers and as the voice of Gerald in 2017’s Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie) before appearing in more movies like Ride Along in 2014, Transformers: The Last Knight in 2017, and 2019’s Rim of the World - Flores’ first Netflix original about youths taking on evil. He also lent his voice Netflix’s Spirit Riding Free: Riding Academy, its animated Jurassic World spin-off series, and appeared on Showtime’s Your Honor miniseries in 2020.
Fred Hechinger (Simon Kalivoda/Isaac) - 1994, 1978 1666
Simon, the comic relief of Fear Street Part One: 1994, is played by Fred Hechinger, who has also had a relationship with Netflix since starring in the 2018 LGBTQ+ rom-com Alex Strangelove the same year he made his debut in Bo Burnham’s Eighth Grade and starred opposite Natalie Portman in Vox Lux. Other Netflix exclusives on his resume include News of the World (temporarily on the platform internationally during COVID) with Tom Hanks and The Woman in the Window with Amy Adams and his HBO Max originals include Steven Soderbergh’s Let Them All Talk and the upcoming limited dramedy series The White Lotus. He is also associated with Amazon Prime (after appearing on an episode of The Underground Railroad) and Hulu (after being cast on the upcoming miniseries Pam & Tommy, starring Sebastian Stan as Tommy Lee and Lily James as Pamela Anderson).
Julia Rehwald (Kate Schmidt/Lizzie) - 1994, 1978, 1666
One of the closest friends of Deena and Simon is Kate Schmidt, played by Julia Rehwald, who (like most of the Fear Street cast) is also slated to appearing in Fear Street Part Two: 1978 and will have a large role in Fear Street Part Three: 1666… but more on those later. The trilogy of Netflix horror movies actually marks the feature-length film debut for the 20-year-old actress, who was only previously known for starring in short films - namely the 2017 teen romance Where’s Darren and culinary comedy Mukbang Masarap in 2019.
Ashley Zukerman (Sheriff Nick Goode/Solomon Goode) - 1994, 1978, 1666
As the obligatory local cop who seems to know more about Shadyside’s secrets than he lets on, we have Ashley Zukerman, who broke out in Australia (where he was raised) on the crime drama Rush before his American debut on the World War II-set miniseries The Pacific on HBO in 2010. After the original Australian version of The Slap in 2011, he appeared on Fox’s short-lived sci-fi show Terra Nova, was cast in another WWII era drama (WGN’s Manhattan), and landed guest spots on hits like Fear the Walking Dead on AMC and Showtime’s Masters of Sex. The star of the upcoming The Lost Symbol series (in which he will play Da Vinci Code hero Robert Langdon) is also known for the 2018 horror gem The Wind, the Hulu original miniseries A Teacher, and his recurring role on HBO’s Succession as Shiv Roy’s ex-boyfriend Nate Sofrelli.
Matthew Zuk (Mayor Will Goode/Elijah Goode) - 1994, 1978, 1666
Playing Sheriff Goode’s brother and the Mayor of Shadyside is Matthew Zuk, who has been a face without a name for much of his preceding career in unnamed and uncredited roles like “Pep Rally Cheer Leader” in We Are Marshall or “Street Pedestrian #2” in Avengers: Infinity War, to name a few. Ironically, his biggest role to date outside of the Fear Street movies requires him to not show his face at all: Matt Bomer’s body double as Negative Man in the Doom Patrol cast. Zuk also got to work with Tom Hanks in the Apple TV+ war drama Greyhound in 2020.
Maya Hawke (Heather Watkins) - 1994
Giving off “Drew Barrymore in Scream” vibes in Fear Street Part One: 1994 is Maya Hawke, who has more than being Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman's daughter as her claim to fame. After making her debut as Jo March in PBS’ miniseries adaptation of Little Women, the 23-year-old actress and model pretty much earned her Scream Queen status when she broke out on the Stranger Things cast as Robin Buckley (whom she is set to reprise when Season 4 of the hit Netflix series premieres) in the same year she joined Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood cast as Manson Family member “Flowerchild.” Next, Hawke will team up with the Riverdale cast’s Camila Mendes for Netflix’s Strangers (described as teen comedy rewrite of an Alfred Hitchcock classic) and voice author Helen Gurley Brown for the upcoming podcast The Playboy Interview.
Sadie Sink (Ziggy Berman/Constance) - 1978, 1666
Maya Hawke’s co-star from the Stranger Things cast, Sadie Sink, has also firmly earned her Scream Queen status at only 19 years old after following up her role as Max Mayfield on the Netflix hit with the platform’s thriller Eli in 2019. The Texas-born actress made her acting debut on a Season 1 episodes of the FX period drama The Americans before earning a guest spot on the hit CBS procedural Blue Bloods in 2014 and would later work with Brie Larson in the drama The Glass Castle in 2017. The hero of Fear Street Part Two: 1978 will next appear in the post-9/11 drama Dear Zoe and director Darren Aronofsky’s The Whale opposite the No Sudden Move cast’s Brendan Fraser.
Gillian Jacobs (C. Berman) - 1978, 1666
It is clear from the Fear Street Part One: 1994 ending that Gillian Jacobs’ character of C. Berman is going to be a major part of the subsequent Fear Street movies. While she is known best for comedies - especially for playing Britta Perry in the Community cast - the 39-year-old actress is no stranger to the horror genre, having starred in Donnie Darko director Richard Kelly’s 2009 cautionary tale The Box and Come Play in 2020. After lending her voice to Invincible cast as “Atom Eve” on Amazon Prime’s animated superhero TV show, Jacobs will try her hand at action movies in Violence of Action opposite Chris Pine and will star in an upcoming biographical miniseries about the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team.
Emily Rudd (Cindy Berman/Abigail) - 1978, 1966
As Ziggy Berman’s sister, Cindy, in Fear Street Part Two: 1978, we have Emily Rudd, who is not related to Paul Rudd in case you were wondering. Appearances in music videos dominated the young actress’ early career before appearing on Amazon Prime’s Philip K. Dick-inspired anthology series Electric Dreams, the platform’s royal family drama The Romanoffs, and The CW’s reboot of the hit primetime soap opera Dynasty in 2020. The Fear Street movies are the first of Rudd’s feature-length credits, but she currently has a sci-fi romance called Moonshot, also starring Cole Sprouse, in the works.
So far, this new trilogy of Fear Street movies has turned out to be some of the best horror movies I have personally seen in 2021. As you can see, the cast is a big reason why.