Below is my interview i did online with michael Kennedy! I was up most the night re-designing my site,but didnt go to bed till 7AM the next morning...
Since Scream 4 was announced by The Weinstein Company news has been running rampant on the internet about possibilities for the fourth film in the successful franchise.One big piece of news of, course, being that a writer by the name of Michael T. Kennedy is being considered for the Scream 4 gig.The Weinstein Company is currently mulling over a packet of materials, which include a full spec script as well as a 30 page, detail treatment for an alternate story.Ghostface.co.uk recently chatted with the writer about his career, other works, and of course Scream 4.
Tim: Good evening.
Michael: Hello. Thanks for the chance to let people know who I am and what I want for Scream 4.
Tim: I am sure the fans want to know as much as possible about Scream 4 so…
Michael: Ask Away....
Tim: The main thing people probably want to know…
Michael:You mean besides if our whole gang will return for #4?
Tim:That and who you are.What other work have you done and
what other works do you have on at the minute??
Michael: I only have some uncredited re-writes under my belt right now so a Scream 4 hire would be huge for me. As far as now, my manager and I created a very high concept reality show that 2 major MAJOR production companies are currently close to optioning -
it is a huge concept and will change the face of reality tv. I also created a sitcom pilot for the talented Kathy Griffin which is very Seinfeldesque in its approach. That script, I have to say, is one of the best things I have ever written and is something I am very, very proud of. Just waiting on her critique. I also have a original horror script, called Chasing Fate, making the rounds and hopefully with the Scream 4 exposure it makes it to the top of people's piles. That script is fun and very 70’s as far as setting and tone. Plus it plays out in real time, which is an aspect I have always wanted to see in horror. In addition to these projects I am in consideration for a staff writing job on CBS’s The New Adventures of Old Christine. As you can see I like to branch out my work into several areas.
Tim: Very eclectic workload.
Michael: To say the least.
Tim: So onto Scream 4.
Tim: Will Sidney be a main character as before in your script?
Michael: In the script Sidney is the main character. In the 30 page
treatment for the alternate story, she is also a main character but it
feels more like an ensemble.
Tim: Ok, fair enough…Do you plan a return to Woodsboro for Scream 4??
Michael: In the script Woodsboro, Windsor College, and Hollywood all play a major role in every aspect of the story. In the treatment Woodsboro is a huge piece of the puzzle. I feel for Scream 4 a return to Woodsboro in one way, shape or fame is the only way to go. The fans want it, as do I.
Tim: Do you plan on bringing back Gale and Dewey?
Michael: It wouldn't be Scream without them. So yes, of course. Gale and Dewey have almost become as iconic as Sidney so they are vital to either story's success...that is if the studio chooses to hire me!
Tim: Brilliant. i can agree there.. they are icons.
Michael: That they are. In a way the series has become bigger than life along with our three main characters. I think that is why some fans in the community have written it off and started a backlash. Scream became so successful so quick and was imitated endlessly as most fresh films are. But here we are 8 years after the last film and 12 years after the first and people are still discussing a 4th film and saying what they want and do not want to see. Scream is still on people’s minds.
Tim: How many new cast members will you be bringing to us?
Michael: In both versions new characters are essential in continuing the series from where Scream 3 left off. New cast will be aplenty. I would say more but of course and with good reason all details for now are under wraps.
Tim: Do you have any particular stars in mind for the new characters?
Michael: Not really. I tend to write without that in mind - I don't want to restrict myself and I only do that when absolutely necessary, as was the case with the sitcom pilot I wrote specifically for Kathy Griffin. I know the Scream trend was to cast tv stars but the new characters are vital to the story, especially in the treatment, so I am sure the casting wizards will do a bang up job.
Tim: Will the story be left open for another movie to continue perhaps another story?
Michael: The script without a doubt ends the story for our original
group. I feel that, like a lot of fans, a trilogy is the way to go. But
Scream 3, to me, was not a proper sendoff. So in a way I wrote Scream 4 in a way to see the ending I wanted. I didn't treat it as if Scream 3 didn't happen but rather as the first part in chapter # 3 of the trilogy.The treatment leaves the door open for a sequel and possibly beyond.
Tim: If the Weinstein’s did hire you and then offered you a chance to write more scripts for what would be a 'Scream 5 and Scream 6' would you have ideas still??
Michael: Oh definitely. I think the series is one of the few slashers that won't have to cop out to many cliché’s our famous series' of the 80's fell to - psychic powers, unstoppable killers, recycled stories…characters returning from the dead.
The first one spoke of the genre, the second sequels, the third trilogies - they are so many more topics Scream could skewer - remakes, j-horror, torture porn. With a good story and strong cast the series could essentially live on forever. I do feel that if my script is chosen over the treatment the only way to go with Part 5 and beyond is with fresh faces and a fresh story.
Tim: What’s your Favourite Scary Movie??
Michael: Man, plenty.But if I had to pick one of the subgenre I cannot live with myself if I don't say Halloween. It is just so perfect.
The simplicity is chilling.Another favorite is Scream itself...
Tim: Ah, did you find 'Scream' to be the Favourite out the trilogy yourself?
Michael: It is my favorite of the three based on the experience and
initial reaction I had to it...in fact I wouldn't be talking to you right
now if it wasn't for the way that film inspired me. I was a junior in high school when Scream came out and I remember going with my friends to see it and being scared nutsless. I knew after I left the theater I wanted to be a writer. I remember going home and pounding out a full script in a spiral notebook. It was such a blatant Scream clone (called Scared no less) but I thought it was brilliant. I still think it is better than Urban Legend.
But I have to say as far as having an unbiased opinion of the three I have to say Scream 2 has grown to surpass the original as my favorite. The story manages to continue the legacy established in the first film without feeling forced. The script is great and how everything ties together is just amazing. Kevin Williamson really hit a homerun with that one. Laurie Metcalf just gives her all in her performance as a grief stricken mother. Many thought the motive was lame but I felt it gave the series a true human quality. Plus her performance, albeit a little over the top, is one of the most riveting in the series. She truly is a great performer. I would love to work with her some day.
Tim: Who was your Favourite character in Scream?
Michael: Man, tough question. That really is a great script and
film...hmmmm.... man that is a toughie..If I had to pick one...
God that is tough. I would probably have to go with Sidney.
Tim: The original tough survivor herself!
Michael: Exactly! She is every girl USA. And I think a lot of people
connected with her and Neve's performance and that is why the film worked and was such a huge success. But there are so many great characters and performances. In my opinion Drew Barrymore was robbed of an Oscar Nom as was Kevin's script. I am sure many people will give me flack for the Oscar talk but so be it.
Tim: Would you prefer Wes craven to direct again if you could have it that way?
Michael: Oh God yes. Wes is a fellow Cleveland boy so it would be a dream to have that happen!
Tim: If you get news that your script is to be used, what do you think is the first thing you will do?
Michael: Besides nuts my pants and ask my manager if he is f-ing with me? hahaha...
Michael: I would call everyone of my college friends and tell them my horror obsession really was 'research' for my future career. I did tell them, though, one day I would write a Scream film that made it to theaters. What I would really do is celebrate with friends and
family and thank my manager for three years of hard hard hard work. Then I would get drunk as hell.
Tim: Will there be any original cast killed off at all in Your Scream 4 or is that a question to keep the fans wondering??
Michael: That is something the fans will have to wait and see. I do tell you this though - if I am not chosen for the job I will gladly give you all Scream 4 materials I have worked on in the last 3 years for you to post on your site. That way the fans can decide if the right script was chosen.
Tim: What about Jamie Kennedy’s comments about a possible return for Randy?
Michael: I do want to talk to Jamie Kennedy about his excitement to return. I never gave it a thought so I would like to see what he has in mind. It has to be crucial to the plot for it to work. As long as it isn’t a return from the dead I am curious to hear his thoughts. I contacted him last night so hopefully he replies.
Tim: Scream 4 would solidify your career, no? Plus a dream come true no doubt!
Michael: Of course. My first big sale with the franchise I grew up loving and still love - God that idea gives me goosebumps.
Tim: It’s if it becomes reality that it really gets you.
Michael: Yes. It would change my life completely.
Tim:Can i ask if you have 1 or 2 killers in mind for your Scream 4??
Or is that another closely guarded secret?
Michael:Hahah can't give that away - let's just say that the way I did it has not been done yet in the series. Take from that what you will...it hasn't been done in more ways than one.
Tim: Fair enough, look forward to it if the script does get used.
Michael: I hope it does...I can say one thing about Scream 4...I want the media hysteria to play an important role. Media today really takes advantage of people’s fear. I want the hysteria surrounding the events to be realistic. Imagine small town USA having a rampant serial killer. Imagine the media frenzy. Scream & Scream 2 displayed that aspect really well but it took a back seat in Scream 3 - I want that back in Scream 4.
Tim: Thanks for talking Michael
Michael: No Problem. Thank you Tim.