Scream Franchise Examiner has an exclusive behind-the-screams look at the “Summer of Scream 4” today—including an interview with one of the film’s extras, who has provided several rare photos from filming for your viewing pleasure.
Yesterday, the NorthvillePatch published a retrospective, “Looking Back on Northville’s Hollywood Year.” The article features commentary on Scream 4, which set up base camp in the state from late June through September. Here is an excerpt:
Nabozny (executive secretary to Northville City Manager Patrick Sullivan) said she hoped people that came to town to look for movie stars would see how nice it was and return to spend some of their dollars there. She recalled how one shoe store in downtown playfully put up a sign reading “Coco needs new shoes” to try and entice Scream 4 stars David Arquette and Courtney Cox to buy some shoes for their baby daughter there.
She also said Scream 4 Director Wes Craven remarked how pleasant and well-kept the city was and how he thought the residents were very laid back and didn’t go chasing stars around. Nabozny said Craven’s site managers told her they would easily consider filming in Northville again because they had such a pleasant experience when they were in town.
Kathy Comaianni got to see the film making process close up for Scream 4. She and her husband Dan own the Next Chapter Bookstore and Bistro downtown, which was used for scenes in the movie.
She said they were contacted by Craven’s site managers and later met Craven and his entourage, who ultimately chose their store to film in. Comaianni said they filmed over a weekend for roughly six to eight minutes of actual movie footage.
Craven’s crew made some minor adjustments to their store including repainting the walls for better lighting and rearranging some furniture. She said she and Dan were thrilled to meet Craven, plus stars like Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox and David Arquette, whom she described as a “very nice” person.
Read the full article here.
Now, SFE is happy to present an exclusive interview with “D.J.”—a Michigan resident who spent the “Summer of Scream 4” observing filming throughout the state. In addition to snapping numerous behind-the-screams photos (several of which can be seen in the slideshow below) and adding several autographs to his collection, D.J. also holds the distinction of having been chosen as an “extra” for the Plymouth shoot.
1) What was the community’s response to having SCREAM 4 film locally?
I was at multiple locations and it was all pretty positive from the locals, the longer they stayed at a site the longer they natives got kinda restless but there were only a few people who seemed to mind and the Scream 4 crew was just as equally cool. They were kinda private at first but I hung around enough that they knew me and would share some stuff they saw filming as well. I was in Ann Arbor for Day 1 and they were driving Emma and Neve around in a car, Livonia when they filmed some scenes at the old police station, downtown Detroit where they filmed the hospital, then they were in Northville for a couple weeks at the bookstore and the ‘Riley’ house and then to Plymouth for my 2 days. They did the Stab-a-thon shooting stuff after that and I was unable to check that out.
2) In addition to observing filming, you were hired as an extra for the Plymouth shoot. What are you able to reveal about this experience?
It was pretty awesome…the filming location was right downtown Plymouth at the park and it had 2 main purposes. The police station location facade and the park area where the kids were around the fountain ie the first Scream. It was also where the scream masks were on the light poles. That was the first thing I got to see that Monday morning and that was a pretty awesome sight. David Arquette and Marley Shelton were the 2 on set that morning when they were taking down the masks. I was a townsfolk whose car got used so I was walking up and down the streets hopefully in the background of one of them. The second scene on that Monday was the kids at the fountain. I was kept in the seclusion area during that but it looked like the scene kinda like Scream 1. Then they did some media type of shoots outside of the police station. It was a long couple of days. The next day was mostly just stuff at the police station…Courteney and Allison getting into a heated battle on the sidewalk but I was too far away in the background to see more than that. The end of the second day in Plymouth was the EW photo shoot, Wes came out after the shoot and met some of his fans and I got a couple autographs from him that day.
3) Can you tell us what the atmosphere was like on set? Were they receptive to the fans? How did the actors interact with each other between filming?
It always seemed like a fun place…Wes and the cast seemed like they were always having a good time and everyone seemed to always be smiling which makes it seem like it they really chose well on the cast. They all just seemed to wanna be around each other and have a good time.
Most of them were very cool and would come over and take pictures and sign some autographs.
4) Security seemed to tighten up as the shoot progressed. Can you share your experiences and/or observations in regard to this?
There really haven’t been many movies made in Michigan so security for most of the movies around here has been pretty light and I’ve gotten to know some of the security guys so they’ve never really given me any problems. I collect autographs as a hobby so I hang out at base camps and they know I’m there for some autographs and not cause problems. The only time I experienced the security issue was the last few weeks when they filmed in Northville for the so called ‘ending’ I guess and we could only be a block away and could see the cast members that were involved driving past bananadoc and I back and forth to base camp so we knew who was there but not really could even guess what was going on which was fine w/ me but I couldn’t stop going because it was just cool to have a horror movie being filmed less than 30 mins from my house.
5) You witnessed some pivotal scenes being filmed. Without revealing any spoilers, can you tell us a bit about what you have seen? Also, do you think that being privy to this will enhance or detract from your movie-going experience?
I’m not sure I saw any pivotal stuff…I saw a bunch of filler stuff. Being a husband, dad and worker it made it tough to stay as late as I wanted. The tough part is not really knowing what you’re seeing they kind of keep you out of the way and a lot of it was indoors so you can only really guess most of the time. You almost always knew who was there, at least the first month and a half till mid-August, then the last few weeks you could only really tell by being at base camp which I did a lot since I was working on (obtaining autographs for) my Scream 4 poster.
I don’t think I really know much more than most since so many pictures and stuff were put on the net.
6) What is your greatest hope for SCREAM 4? Your biggest concern?
The greatest hope is that they make Scream 5 back in Michigan and I can be an extra again, lol. Biggest concern is that I find out what happens before I get to see it. I think it will do well though.
With special thanks to D.J. for so generously sharing his reflections and photos.
Got an inside scoop that you’d like to see appear in print? Email Scream Franchise Examiner at OyeJohn52@aol.com.
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