Scream 2’s script leaked ahead of the film’s release, and nobody realised

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Scream 2’s writer Kevin Williamson recalls how leaking several fake scripts created a smokescreen to cover the film’s actual ending leaking in Hollywood. 

When Scream 2 was in pre-production back in the late 90s, it was one of Hollywood’s most-talked about productions of the time thanks to the red-hot success of the first film. However, director Wes Craven and his production team knew that this meant leaks could be a problem, so Craven instructed  the sequel’s writer, Kevin Williamson to write a few fake endings for the sequel.

Williamson has been chatting about the film to The Hollywood Reporter as it celebrates its 25th birthday this year.

Recalling the process of writing the ending, he says that “we wrote a dummy script where Dewey killed people with someone else. These dummy scripts were sort of ridiculous now that you think about them, but we just wanted to make the movie fun. We wanted to make sure we kept the surprises because a movie like this relies on its twists and turns”.

Part of keeping the film’s real ending secret was to ensure that the dummy scripts got out into the world. And for that, Craven and Williamson depended on auditioning actors gossiping to other actors. “We leaked the first one because we knew we couldn’t hold it in; everyone was interested”, he said. “We were sending the script out without the last 75 pages”, up until Wes Craven wanted actors to come in and read it before they aduitioned. “We just knew that people would start talking. There was such an interest in what was going on with Scream 2 that we wrote a dummy script and leaked it”.

The process of leaking dummy scripts worked, because ultimately the real script for Scream 2 would also leak – yet nobody took any notice! By this time Hollywood had had its fill of several Scream 2 endings it seems with Williamson recalling that “the real one got out, but no one seemed to care by the time the real one got out.”

The reveal is part of a much longer interview with Williamson, which is well worth a read. The next film in the Scream franchise is currently in pre-production. Should you stumble across a leaked ending for that one, remember this cautionary tale of Williamson’s ploy and take it with a grain of salt.

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