10 Things We Want To See In Scream 6

When news broke that Neve Campbell won't portray Sidney for "Scream 6" due to contract disputes around inequitable pay, it felt like a sucker punch for the fans that grew up with the character famed for rewriting the rules of final girl engagement in horror. Nancy Thompson (Heather Langenkamp) first showed us that the archetype could do more than run and scream throughout the "Nightmare on Elm Street" franchise (and especially in "Wes Craven's New Nightmare"). But Sidney revived the idea when slashers were dead-and-buried. (Any diehard "Scream" fan is likely already quoting Sid's infamously quippy line: "Not in my movie.") Understandably, it can be hard to let Sid go, as she lives some suburbia life with Detective Mark Kincaid and her children without the looming killer threat of Ghostface.

But we can forget that Campbell has already done more than most final girl characters in blockbuster slasher franchises. For 25 years, we've seen the tenacious Sid tackle anything thrown at her in five out of the six franchise film entries — even if it cost her friendships, family, and romance. While Sid's future fate in the franchise remains unclear, Ghostface won't be slowing down slicing and dicing anytime soon. What better time to embrace a new generation of characters for the beloved franchise and deepen its world than when Sid finally gets a little break? Here's what I hope "Scream 6" could bring to fans in March 2023.

Gale Weathers still got it

In "Scream 4," we saw a dissatisfied Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) living with Dewey (David Arquette) in Woodsboro. Despite her love for him, the small-town life didn't suit the take-no-bulls***t investigative reporter lifestyle she had grown accustomed to over the years. Unlike Sid, Gale struggled to write a memoir or fiction. When we saw her return to broadcast television in "Scream 5," it made a lot of sense for her character. As that film eventually showed us, sometimes love between two people is not enough to reconcile lifestyle differences. Dewey was cut from Woodsboro's cloth, content to be a sheriff more consumed with B&E calls than multiple homicides. Gale was meant to run on stilettos, not walk.

Of course, Dewey died in "Scream 5," saving the lives (again) of Woodsboro. In "Scream 6," what better way to handle how his death affected her than by having Gale write another tell-all story? She's always been a little jealous of Sid's memoir: This would give Gale an outlet to report on and process the events of "Scream 5" with a heartfelt goodbye to Dewey. Sidney's "Out of Darkness" gifted us with the seemingly simple (but genuine) line: "Just when you think things couldn't get any worse. Sometimes they don't. Sometimes they get better." It's time to gift Gale — in all her snark and pathos — a line equally memorable and, in dedication, to our beloved Dewey. Plus, her books are always good for unintentional drama!

Kirby's role better be more than a cameo

I remember the exact moment I saw the Kirby (Hayden Panettiere) Easter egg in "Scream 5." There were only two other people in the press screening, and I was furiously scribbling in the dark (likely writing upside down and over words I'd just written) when Jack Quaid's Ritchie opened up a YouTube page about "Stab." Alongside the "watch next" column, there was a Bloody Disgusting video claiming that Kirby was still alive and featured on a talk show, discussing her traumatic experiences from "Scream 4." I squealed so loud. (Turns out Craven wasn't trolling us when he teased Kirby's survival in 2012.)

Now that her return is public knowledge, it's unknown how she'll factor into "Scream 6." One way to write Kirby into the film would be to show footage from that talk show appearance, catching the viewer up on her life. That'd give us a way into the exposition without feeling too heavy-handed — especially if Gale Weathers is interviewing her.

However, after so much seeding and fanfare, it'd feel like a missed opportunity if Kirby didn't get to play along with the surviving teens of "Scream 5." Here's hoping she becomes a grounding force for the new batch of Woodsboro teens with another stellar horror monologue for us to quote endlessly. As the only surviving teen from "Scream 4," she knows what it's like to pick up the survivor mantle and how to unpack all its attached legacy.

Don't bring back Dewey

Yes, I miss Dewey. But I don't think he needs to return in "Scream 6." If the filmmakers went in that direction, it'd cheapen the hard-hitting death that "Scream 5" gave us. In the end, Dewey received the kind of heroic ending that his character always sought to have. In an interview with Variety, Arquette explained that Dewey always wanted to be a "Clint Eastwood"-like character. "Scream 5" gave him a bloody adieu that saved Tara (Jenna Ortega) and Sam Carpenter's (Melissa Barrera) lives, going out in a blaze of glory.

Reflecting on that moment, Arquette told the outlet, "There was something noble about [his death] for Dewey. He was there to protect Sidney and the people of Woodsboro. There was a scene [between Dewey and Gale] and there was a take they didn't use where I was super emotional. I sort of ad-libbed: 'I'm a failure. I couldn't save Judy, I couldn't save my sister.'"

While the "Scream" franchise is known for surprise reveals (and deaths), this is one character beat that was so earnestly captured in "Scream 5," that it'd feel like a betrayal of Dewey's character arc to rob him of one final victory — despite him not living to see it.

Let Sid rest in peace (not pieces)

While Sid won't appear in "Scream 6," let's hope they leave the door open for her to return in a future film entry. Aside from "Halloween H20," we don't really see final girls grow up to become mothers to gain an insight into how that trauma has shaped their views of selfhood and parenting, a territory that slashers have yet to invest in exploring. A future "Scream" film could tackle this subject as a way to revisit and reanalyze Sid's arc. Throughout the franchise, Sid has had to untangle her mother's trauma from hers. Since she's grown up with that viewpoint, it'd be fascinating to see how her children's experiences with Sid's past affect their present and future.

Alas, that's not this film! But despite Sid not being in "Scream 6," Jenna Ortega told ET that she'll be referenced throughout the film: "But it's very clear, like, there's references to Sidney, of course. It's nice because there's still a protectiveness in the script and that's something that the actors had naturally over her because obviously we respect her and we want the best for her." While these details about Sid's life in the script are kept under wraps, let's hope that they preserve her memory and story in a way that teases more of Sid's adult life to come.

Hank Loomis returns

I don't think I've heard anyone else ask for Hank Loomis (C.W. Morgan) to return to the franchise as much as me. But I have a vital reason for it: He's one of the only people alive who knew Maureen from her days in L.A. and Woodsboro. (I've been dying for Maureen to receive her proper due in the franchise, as we never learn as much about her life as we do her death.) Fans forget that he worked as a lawyer at Sunrise Studios at the same time that Maureen worked there, too. Since he was in the studios' shady legal department, it's entirely possible he knew about John Milton's evil crimes and more importantly how Maureen dealt with the fallout.

Further, his inclusion in a "Scream 6" storyline could provide Sam with more understanding (and even catharsis) around Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) being her biological father. Who better to discuss what it's like to be related to a serial killer than Hank Loomis? He'd be the last link Sam has to her Loomis side of the family, considering Billy and Mrs. Loomis (Laurie Metcalf) are both deceased. "Scream 5" ended on a note that made it seem like Sam was just starting to reconcile with what it means to have Billy as a bio-dad, and "Scream 6" could deepen this journey by bringing back Hank Loomis for questions and answers. Plus, let's be real, it's very likely he'd be a corrupt lawyer now working in the Big Apple — the location of the upcoming film.

Mindy Meeks-Martin and Chad Meeks-Martin sibling team-up

"Scream 5" chose to keep Randy's (Jamie Kennedy) memory alive with the introduction of his nephew Chad Meeks-Martin (Mason Gooding) and niece Mindy Meeks-Martin (Jasmin Savoy Brown). While Chad is more of a jock than his uncle, Mindy picked up Randy's cinephile mantle, even gifting their teen group with a killer horror monologue of her own.

But unlike Sam and Tara, Chad and Mindy don't share many scenes. "Scream 6" is the perfect opportunity to fix this blind spot. Additionally, it'd be a great way to call back to the horror set-pieces of "Scream 2" that often relied on two people to escape Ghostface. In "Scream 2," Dewey and Gale's love keeps them fighting and alive. Why not explore a similar terrain but use the devoted love of siblings (especially twins!) to save each other? In 2022's "Scream," these twins barely made it out alive. After that ordeal, it's time to give them a fighting chance to show Ghostface what the legacy of Randy has become: badass heroes who are leading roles, not content to sit on the sidelines.

More reality-breaking scenes

One of the best parts about 2022's "Scream" is how directors Tyler Gillett and Matt Bettinelli-Olpin visualized Sam's fracturing reality. Throughout the film, Billy Loomis' face appears on reflective surfaces, reinforcing that something is happening to Sam that no one else can see (literally and figuratively). By the film's end, Sam still experiences visions of Billy, and we don't know why. Based on how you see the ending, you could say that Sam killed Ghostface to survive. Or you could interpret Billy's head nod in the car's reflective surface to mean that Sam enjoyed killing Ritchie.

I don't think there was enough narrative space to explore her questions on identity and sanity, but "Scream 6" could. Now that Sam is seemingly living in New York City and years have passed since the events of 2022's "Scream," it might be time for Sam to dig into why she's seeing Billy Loomis. A condition like that doesn't just disappear. Since the sightings are connected to her traumatic experience from the last film, seeing Ghostface's image popping up all over the city — as we see in the teaser trailer for "Scream 6" — could trigger these visions and unanswered questions to return.

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.

Only one killer or more than two

With the exception of "Scream 3," the slasher franchise has always relied on the surprise one-two-punch reveal of two Ghostface killers. "Scream" had Billy and Stu. "Scream 2" had Mrs. Loomis and Mickey (Timothy Olyphant). "Scream 4" had Jill (Emma Roberts) and Charlie (Rory Culkin). 2022's "Scream" had Ritchie and Amber (Mikey Madison). If the tagline for "Scream 6" — "New York. New rules." — is anything to go by, we can hope that they break out of this formulaic killer rut. No more two killers! Give us one stellarly written Ghostface or a devastating trio to outrun right when the characters believe they've won.

The "Scream" movies pride themselves in breaking genre conventions, so it'd feel like a misfire if the upcoming film falls into the same trap as previous ones. According to Jenna Ortega on Entertainment Tonight, the upcoming "Scream 6" film will lean more into bloodshed than its predecessor. "I think that this is probably the most aggressive and violent version of Ghostface we've ever seen," she said. What better way to up the ante (plot-wise and kill-wise) than by having several Ghostface murderers set loose in the Big Apple?

Jaw-dropping opening kill scene

No death in the slasher franchise has ever hit as hard as Casey's (Drew Barrymore). Barrymore chose to portray a character who wouldn't live to see the opening credits of Wes Craven's film. As a horror fan, Barrymore knew the rules that the big-name star would likely survive anything in a slasher. "What I wanted to do is to take that comfort zone away," she recalled to EW in 2020. "I asked if I could be Casey Becker so we would establish this rule does not apply in this film." What makes her death scene even more haunting is how Craven shot it. Instead of panning away from Casey's body, Craven lingers on her taking her final breath — a fact that's even more harrowing with the inclusion of her holding a phone since her mom can hear her daughter dying. She's so close to Casey but arrived too late to help.

2022's "Scream" was the first film entry in the franchise not directed by Craven. There's a preciousness felt in how Tyler Gillett and Matt Bettinelli-Olpin handled Woodsboro and this world, down to the film's emotional send-off to the late and great horror director. With "Scream 6," it feels time to start taking bold chances again, including giving fans a surprising opening kill sequence. A fantastic way to do this would be to kill off one of our leads in the opening scene, jilting us to pay attention to the bloody mayhem that'll follow suit.

A shocking OG cast member returns!

For years, Matthew Lillard has been telling fans that Stu survived the events of 1996's "Scream." (Yes, I still don't know how anyone could outlive a television falling on someone's head. But if you never see a dead body in a horror film, logic reasons they'll return somehow.) Lillard told fans in January 2022 that in an earlier screenplay for "Scream 3," Stu was the mastermind killer — not Sid's half-brother, Roman (Scott Foley) — creating high school killers from behind bars. However, the tragic events of Columbine High School led the filmmaking team to scrap any plotline involving violence at school, which meant sayonara Stu!

Recently, "Scream" franchise writer Kevin Williamson confirmed Stu is dead. Do we buy it? Maybe! But recent photos of Ghostface in "Scream 6" has led the Stu rumor mill to kickstart again. The donned mask looks like it's gone through hell, hinting that whoever owns this mask has had it for quite some time. (Stu would 100% keep his mask as a warped souvenir.)

While it may or may not be Stu, the "Scream" sequel seems to be suggesting that someone will return. Why not bring back a survivor from the film's original trilogy? If it is Stu, Sam could receive additional intel about her father, Billy, and confront a part of his messy past. Give us someone Gale would love to throwdown with as the film's only legacy character.