Wes Craven was already a legend of the horror genre after writing and directing The Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes and A Nightmare on Elm Street between 1972 and 1984, but his career got a whole new lease of life when he changed the game once again with the release of Scream in December 1996.
The holiday period isn’t typically when Hollywood slashers tend to debut, when history has more than proven that October brings the biggest box office rewards given that it’s the spookiest time of the year, but Scream is hardly your run of the mill slasher. Smart, subversive and self-aware, seeing characters that knew the tropes of the horror movie was as groundbreaking as it was revolutionary, and the smash hit ended up bringing in $173 million at the box office against a $15 million budget, launching an entire franchise.
It also led to a slew of thinly-veiled imitators as the template became the latest example of the industry’s love for jumping on a bandwagon, but none of them could recapture the magic. The fifth installment, and first since Craven’s passing in 2015, arrives in January of next year, but the original is coming back to theaters in October as part of Scream‘s 25th anniversary celebrations, that also includes a 4K Ultra HD home video release.
Scream returns to the big screen on October 10th, and it could potentially be set for a new lease of life at the box office. After all, business has been down for the last year and a half, but the recent success of A Quiet Place II and The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It showed that audiences are happy to be terrified any time of the year.