‘Black Monday’ Star Regina Hall Reflects on the Legacy of ‘Scary Movie’ 20 Years Later
Over her career, Regina Hall has done everything. But the bulk of her work has been in comedy. She’s starred in hit films such as The Best Man, Think Like a Man, Girls Trip, and Little. But Hall is probably still best known for her role as Brenda Meeks in the first four entries of the Scary Movie franchise.
Still early in her career, Hall agreed to star in the film because she was a fan of the Wayans brothers. Now, even two decades on, Hall’s hilariously over-the-top performance continues to live on. Speaking with The A.V. Club to promote her Showtime series Black Monday, Hall looked back on 20 years of Scary Movie.
The ‘Scary Movie’ series kicked off 20 years ago
When Scary Movie hit theaters in the summer of 2000, the parody took aim at the rejuvenated slasher genre. In the late 1990s, movies such as Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer brought horror back in a big way. Keenan Ivory Wayans directed the film, and Marlon and Shawn Wayans both co-wrote and acted in it.
The $19 million production — led by relative unknown Anna Faris — went on to earn $278 million worldwide. Even though the Wayans exited the franchise after two films, three more sequels followed, only one of which Faris and Hall passed on. By the time Scary Movie 5 was released in 2013, the series had all but run out of steam.
Regina Hall’s Brenda has remained a highlight of the franchise
The legacy of that 2000 film might not have remained as strong. Yet, even now, Hall’s performance continues to be remembered fondly. The actress’s go-for-broke style created some of the funniest scenes in the series, including Scary Movie 3‘s one and only F-bomb. Now, 20 years later, Hall reflects on how Brenda has endured.
“Brenda has definitely become her own little…,” Hall told The A.V. Club. “It’s so funny because I saw Marlon [Wayans] and I said, ‘Wow, this would be their 20-year high school reunion. Where do you think they are now? Where are they though?’ Brenda got locked up for something. I know she did some time in jail.”
Given Brenda’s tendency to encounter supernatural forces, we have no doubt she would have gotten in some kind of hot water. But, since she inexplicably returned for Scary Movie 2 and 4 despite being killed off in the previous films, Brenda would probably persevere anyway.
Could a ‘Scary Movie’ reboot happen?
Given how hot reboots are right now, we wouldn’t put it past Dimension Films — which released Scary Movie 5 — to mount efforts to revive the series. Throughout its run, the series changed hands from Wayans (1-2) to Airplane! director David Zucker (3-4) and finally Undercover Brother‘s Malcolm D. Lee. Reuniting the Wayans brothers, Faris, and Hall could be enough to reignite interest in the Scary Movie series.
Moreover, there’s an entirely new crop of horror filmmakers out there to parody. True, Marlon Wayans has taken a similar approach with his A Haunted House franchise. But that series hasn’t come close to making the impact of Scary Movie. Besides, we’d love to see the Wayans take on films such as The Witch, Hereditary, and A Quiet Place.
For now, fans will have to settle for Hall’s own musings of what would have become of her fan-favorite character. But it’s not impossible to imagine a world where we do eventually find out what happened to Brenda Meeks.