First, Ben Stiller’s Zoolander sequel declined to take on the delightful mantle of 2oolander. Then, the second installment in the Now You See Me franchise made some good will disappear by sticking with a boring sequential number-based naming convention, when the subtitle Now You Don’t was right there for the picking. Now, Kevin Williamson is also showing himself to be fun title-averse, announcing that the fifth Scream movie, which has heretofore been known as Scream 5—you know, because it’s the fifth movie in the Scream franchise, which includes five preceding films with Scream in the title—will be titled... Scream. (This is not what we meant by ditching the numbers.)
Yes, nearly 25 years after the first Scream movie, which starred Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, and David Arquette—who will all be back for Scream 5, er, Scream—Williamson and everyone else involved in Scream (the fifth movie, not the first) decided to dust off the old Scream title from the original film, because it’s not like it had been used since 1996 (aside from, oh, three other times.) Williamson didn’t offer much info on the thinking behind this title, or even why, if they absolutely had to stick with a numbered nomenclature, they couldn’t have just called the movie 5cream, which is fun and also right there.
It’s not the first time a sequel reclaimed the name of the original—see David Gordon Green and Danny McBride’s Halloween from 2018, which dropped in on a very traumatized, heavily armed Laurie Strode (a very silver foxy Jamie Lee Curtis.) As film editor A.A. Dowd wrote of that effort, the film was meant to be “the sequel” to John Carpenter’s original, not just a sequel; regardless of how successful the movie was in that respect, we suppose we could understand what inspired Green and McBride to just use the same name. Though it recently wrapped filming, we don’t know much about Scream—the 2022 film, not the 1996 one—aside from casting. But it is the kind of arch franchise that would have made a title like 5cream work. Guess we’ll have to wait for Legally Blond3 to come through.