AceShowbiz - Neve Campbell is quitting the "Scream" film franchise after 26 years over a salary dispute. While referencing difficulties over establishing herself "as a woman" in the film industry and "Scream" series, the "Wild Things" actress announced she did not think the wage offer for her appearance in the sixth instalment of the long-running slasher series equated to the value she has brought to the movies.
"Sadly I won't be making the next Scream film," the 48-year-old said in a statement released on Monday, May 6. "As a woman I have had to work extremely hard in my career to establish my value, especially when it comes to 'Scream'."
"I felt the offer that was presented to me did not equate to the value I have brought to the franchise. It's been a very difficult decision to move on," she continued reasoning. "To all my 'Scream' fans, I love you. You've always been so incredibly supportive to me. I'm forever grateful to you and to what this franchise has given me over the past 25 years."
Neve has played the terrorized main protagonist of the "Scream" series, Sidney Prescott, in all five of the films since 1996. Most recently, she reprised the role in the reboot released in 2022. It made $140 million at the box office against a $24 million budget, with the last five films in the franchise pulling in ticket sales of $744.5 million.
Neve previously told Entertainment Tonight she was unsure about returning for the sixth film. She added, "I don't know if I am," before saying she "can't get into it." Her comments followed the death of creator Wes Craven, who was killed by a brain tumor in 2016 four weeks before his 76th birthday.
The director's "Scream" original about mask-wearing knife killer "Ghostface" was credited with resurrecting the slasher genre and grossed $173 million in the U.S. on a $15 million budget. It has been reported Neve was paid a total of $9 million for the first three films, $1,500,000 for the first, $3,500,000 for the second, and $4,000,000 for the third.
It is not clear how much Neve made from the fourth and fifth installments but it is common in Hollywood to have "back end deals." They see main stars lower their salary fees in exchange for a percentage of box office receipts, especially in the case of lucrative franchises.
Neve's exit comes as Dermot Mulroney, 58, was on Monday named as the latest actor to join the cast of the sixth "Scream" film, with The Hollywood Reporter saying the "My Best Friend's Wedding" star will play a cop.
The most recent reboot of the movie brought back Neve with original stars including Courteney Cox, who plays TV reporter Gale Weathers, and the "Friends" actress' real-life ex-husband David Arquette, who reprised his role as gormless police officer Deputy Dwight "Dewey" Riley.
Production for the sixth slasher film is expected to begin in the summer of 2022, and Courteney is still attached to the project. Newcomers from the latest reboot are also set to return, including 31-year-old Melissa Barrera, 28-year-old Jasmin Savoy Brown and 19-year-old Jenna Ortega.
Courteney told Entertainment Tonight she feels the plot of the upcoming film is top quality, adding, "I don't know about contracts and where things are, but I'll tell you in the script - it's a really good one."