‘Scream 4’ cast talks about upcoming reboot

by Andrew Scoggins

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Erik Knudsen, Rory Culkin, Marielle Jaffe and Hayden Pannettiere all star in the upcoming “Scream 4,” which combines the veteran cast of the first three films with newcomers, Courtesy of Gemma La Mana

HAYDEN PANNETIERE
The Daily Aztec: How long did it take you to perfect the perfect “scream” for this movie?
Hayden Pannettiere: I think it’s a cumulative thing. When I was very young I learned how to scream at the top of my lungs. Then being on “Heroes” for four years I definitely got a start on the blood-curdling scream.

DA: “Scream 4” is made up of the new generation of young actresses. What do you and the other co-stars bring to the franchise that’s different from the late ‘90s version?
HP: Well there is a lot of modern day technology that comes into the film and the filming of the murders, like what you see in “Saw,” and the rules have changed. The audience has evolved and are harder and harder to scare, so therefore the rules and what are clichés have to adapt as well. But it’s just a group of young people who are modern that can relate to that audience.

DA: You have said your knowledge about previous “Scream” movies affected your preparation and performance in the role. Can you elaborate on that?
HP: Well it affected in the way that I knew where “Scream” movies have come from. Because “Scream” redefined horror movies, because horror movies had become all about those rules and clichés, and “Scream” changed all that. Even though the movie is a sequel, it’s more of a reboot of the cast and characters and most of it was getting that comedy back. It has those moments of comic relief but it’s a very specific type of comedy. It’s just not a regular horror movie.

DA: If you could play one major horror film villain, who would it be and why?

HP: Oh that’s a tough one, but it’d be fun to do Carrie, play a complete psycho. I like “Carrie” because it’s a horror movie and it’s terrifying. But you kind of feel for her, she’s a real character that you could play with, and I’ve always wanted to play someone who was a bit cuckoo.
DA: How was working in the horror genre different from the lighthearted genres you have filmed in the past?
HP: I’ve heard from a lot of people that it’s either an amazing time shooting a horror movie or its just really stressful. It’s because it’s so high-strung for the entire movie, because it’s all about being scared or screaming or running away. There’s a lot of emotion that goes on while filming. But it’s sometimes hard to be genuinely scared while being on set because everything is so technical. But it’s again not a typical horror movie because you are not cringing in the corner the entire time.

DA: Could you tell us a little bit about what it was like working with Wes Craven as a director?
HP: Wes is amazing. You’d expect a guy like that to be creepy, it’d be like meeting Stephen King. There has to be a reason why their love in life is to terrify people. But he’s such a sweet man and there’s nothing creepy about him, he’s really funny and has these one-liners that are just hysterical. But the one thing I love the most about him is that when you are on set, you can see how much he loves what he does. And that is such a great vibe for the set, for the crew and the cast. It makes people want to be there, he’s a mastermind and he’s brilliant.

EMMA ROBERTS
The Daily Aztec: What drew you to this role in “Scream 4”?
Emma Roberts: I just thought it would be really amazing to work with Wes Craven and the whole original cast. I thought if they were coming back it would be really amazing. And I read the script and I just really loved it and I thought why not? It was really fun, lots of blood, lots of death and lots of fun.

DA: This is the second film where you have worked with an ensemble cast, the first being “Valentine’s Day.” How would you compare your experiences with both casts?
ER: They both were so fun. It’s one of those things where you never know who’s going to be at work, which is always exciting. In “Valentine’s Day” I remember going to hair and makeup so tired every morning and I run into Patrick Dempsey and Jamie Foxx, which was hilarious. And then for “Scream” it was just really cool. I was definitely intimidated to meet David (Arquette) and Courteney (Cox) because they have been doing these movies for 10 years, but they were so awesome and really fun to work with.

DA: How did you adapt to your role in “Scream 4”?
ER: It was one of those things that my entire look was transformed. The movie before this one, “It’s Kind of a Funny Story,” I had short blond hair and I hardly wore any makeup. But in this one I have long, really dark brown hair and I definitely look more mature and that was the first step. And then once you’re on set, wearing someone else’s clothes and talking like someone else, it kind of all just falls into place and that was really fun for me.

DA: As part of the younger generation coming into the “Scream” franchise, how was it working with the veterans?
ER: They were really cool, I have worked on sets with casts where there is a mixture of young casts and older casts and it’s very divided. But with Neve (Campbell), David, and Courteney on screen they acted like we had all known each other forever. They were all really welcoming and didn’t treat us like we were kids, which was really refreshing. We all had a really fun time, it was like summer camp because we all shot over the summer in Michigan and it was just a good time.

DA: You’ve been pretty open about how terrified you are about horror films, especially when it comes to “Scream,” so you would seem to be an easy target for pranks. Were there any pranks pulled on set?
ER: Well Wes Craven was the biggest prankster and he got everyone. He would have people dress up as the Scream guy and hop into scenes he wasn’t supposed to be in. So there was a scene where Hayden (Pannettiere) had to open a closet and the guy jumps out of the closet that he wasn’t supposed to be in and scared the crap out of her. And I saw it happen but I fell for it a few days later and I was terrified. I’m hoping for a blooper reel because there were so many good pranks.

DA: So now that you are a slasher film veteran, what advice would you give to attractive young college students who may find themselves prey to a systematic serial killer?
ER: I would say don’t go to parking structures at night without a friend. And of course, never never say you will be right back, because you probably won’t be, ever.

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