The Unseen Scream 4 Part 6: Gale's Tarnished Brand

Article originally published on by wicked-scribe.

Scream 4 had a lot of characters to juggle, and within that juggling, three core characters to service. While many were happy with Sidney’s sizable screentime and others unhappy with Dewey’s seemingly short shrift, Gale Weathers seems to have just the right amount to make her presence balance the others out. Prior to these decisions being made in the editing room, there were many more instances of Gale’s rogue investigation.

At the beginning of the second act, we are outside Olivia’s crimescene when Gale immediately rushes to the two-man geeksquad of Charlie & Robbie for help. Originally, that move was her ‘last resort’ after pestering the police for an exclusive comment on record. Ironic, because in Scream 2 it was Debbie Salt pestering Gale for a quote. As the photo below shows, it was Deputies Hoss & Perkins on the receiving end.

Now let's catch that from the opposite angle...

Marley Shelton's presence suggests Deputy Judy may have slinked in at some point…

This scene would have reinforced Gale’s drop to the bottom of relevancy. Arguably that point was already well-made in other scenes. In the released film, bypassing the established-as-useless cops and going direct to the teens proved a smarter move on her part (of course, in retrospect she was directly asking the killer for help!).

The next major trim for Gale was the Stabathon. Make that trims. Originally a much longer sequence that took eight nights to film (plus a return to the location for more party footage the following week), besides the removal of the alternate Ghostface masks, several minutes were excised featuring Gale’s arrival and infiltration of the barn – and more.

Gale was to arrive in her gold car (naturally) which she hid in some trees. Clutching a Ghostface mask, after looking around she put it on to get past the teens outside...

For whatever reason, she couldn’t go through the main entrance of the barn so went around and found a basement/under-structure to prowl through...

After which she rises from the trapdoor with the mask back on, which we saw in the finished film as her new first appearance in the barn sequence.

Another cut calls back to the scene from Scream 2 where Gale & Dewey spot the college guy on a phone and go after him: After setting up the cameras, Gale was to have noticed someone dressed as Ghostface acting suspiciously, and followed him outside. She hides behind/under a car at which point the close Ghostface takes a piss just next to her, revealing it’s only a drunk teen. Hopefully Gale didn’t suffer any um, “sidespray”.

Yet another deletion took place after Gale discovers that a Ghostface is covering up her cameras. She marches back into the barn sans-mask and gets surrounded by a group of Ghostfaces – like Sidney’s Cassandra rehearsal in Scream 2. The real Ghostface is somehow among them but gets away because Gale is momentarily stuck in the crowd.

Ah, the infamous "Go ahead if you have the guts" moment from the trailer – maybe Gale should have said "Go ahead if you have the cuts"!? But in all seriousness, that was only half the line and out of context. I believe Courteney Cox’s dialogue to Ghostface in full was (to paraphrase) "Go ahead if you have the guts, because I’m fucking famous!"

Although the original lengthier barn sequence probably read better on paper as a more old-school solo investigation for Gale Weathers that forced her to navigate a series of trials to get the scoop, on film it was evident to be all over the place in pacing.

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