‘Scream’: Neve Campbell ‘Didn’t Sleep for a Month’ After Watching Her First Scary Movie

When Scream debuted in 1996, actor Neve Campbell stole hearts with her performance. The actor went on to star in other successful movies and shows. Campbell now appears in the fifth installment of the Scream franchise. But while she is a successful horror film star, she prefers not to watch scary movies. In fact, the actor once revealed that she “didn’t sleep for a month” after watching her first scary movie.

Neve Campbell didn’t want to return to the scary movie franchise

Neve Campbell in the scary movie 'Scream 3'
Despite starring in the ‘Scream’ franchise, Neve Campbell doesn’t love scary movies. | Joseph Viles Dimension Films

In 2020, Campbell and the Scream franchise collectively announced that Campbell would reprise her role as Sidney Prescott for the fifth installment. While the star expressed her excitement for the project, she initially wasn’t too ecstatic. Scream 5 is the first Scream movie following the original director Wes Craven’s death.

Campbell and Craven had a close relationship, and she wasn’t sure she wanted to be on set and in the movie without him. Speaking to Variety and fellow scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis, Campbell noted that she “had been really apprehensive about doing another one.”

“People had asked in the past whether I would do another one without Wes or whether I would make another one,” Campbell explained. “I always felt like it’d be too difficult to do it without Wes. He was the master of these films. He did such a beautiful job on them. We were a family.”

The new directors, Tyler Gillett and Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, were adamant about having her on the film. So, they wrote her a letter detailing their inspiration for directing. The directing duo mentioned that Craven inspired their careers, and they intended to honor his legacy in the new movie. As it turns out, the letter was all it took to have Campbell on board.

Campbell couldn’t sleep for months after watching 1 film

Scary movies aren’t for everyone. And Campbell is one of those people who simply can’t stand them. Despite having a successful career in the horror genre and establishing herself as a bankable actor in the industry, Campbell still has qualms with the genre.

Campbell sat down with her Scream costars David Arquette and Courteney Cox for IMDb’s Burning Questions segment. The stars spoke about early cinematic experiences. Campbell answered, “Mine was The Changeling with George C. Scott at a sleepover.”

The actor recalled watching the movie at a sleepover when she was 11 years old, saying, “I didn’t sleep for a month.” She and Cox listed details about the movie they deemed frightening, saying, “the bulbs and the wheelchair going down the stairs, and the kid in the water. I just can’t.”

Campbell doesn’t like horror movies

In the Variety interview, both scream queens Curtis and Campbell admitted not liking horror movies. Campbell said, “I’m so glad you said that. Horror movies have their place in the world, but I don’t watch them.” Campbell also recalled her first experience with a scary movie, citing it as the reason for her aversion to all things horror.

Despite not liking horror films, Campbell does recognize their impact on her career. She said she was thankful for scary movies and her experiences in them. However, she acknowledges the disparity in the genre.

She said, “There’s always the promise of a back end. And then of course it’s drowned in publicity and costs.” Campbell hopes that with her work in Scream 5 and the horror genre, things will improve for other women.

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