11:00pm PT by Sydney Bucksbaum
'Scream's' Killer Speaks: Who Was Behind MTV's Ghostface Mask?
[Warning: This story contains spoilers from the Scream season one finale.]
MTV's version of Scream's Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) is less concerned with reporting the news of all the murders rocking the town, and more interested in creating it.
During Tuesday's season one finale of the MTV series based on Wes Craven's horror franchise, true crime podcaster Piper Shaw (Amelia Rose Blaire) was unmasked as the killer targeting Emma (Willa Fitzgerald) and the town of Lakewood. Her motive? She was the secret daughter of the infamous Brandon James and Emma's mother Maggie/Daisy (Tracy Middendorf) — and she wanted revenge for her father's death.
The Hollywood Reporter spoke with Blaire to find out when she learned of her character's true identity, what it's like joining the ranks of Scream killers and whether she'll be back for season two.
When did you find out that you were the one behind the mask?
On my last day of filming episode six, right before I went in to do the scene with Will (Connor Weil) in the car dealership when he gets dragged away. I definitely did not see that one coming. I was shocked, surprised, excited and terrified all at once.
After you found out the truth, how did that influence how you played Piper?
It definitely changed my approach because I had been doing all this research into the inside of a mind of a killer and what sparks someone to do things like this. What would trigger all of it? I've been profiling all the other characters trying to figure out who it was. So to turn it all on myself was really trippy and kind of creepy. I made this full bible on everything the killer had done, where everyone was when the phone calls were made. So to then go back and see where I was when crimes were committed, it was really cool to own that. But I still tried to keep it as cool as possible when doing my scenes with Emma because Piper wouldn't blow her cover like that. But to have all that darkness bubbling underneath definitely twisted the performance. It had to.
In all your research, did you ever suspect Piper or did you have any other theories about who the killer was before you found out?
I never suspected it would be Piper. I thought that if Piper was involved in some way, maybe she was helping the killer or something but I never thought it was her behind the mask. I was dead set on Kieran (Amadeus Serefini) and Audrey (Bex-Taylor Klaus). Those two are majorly suspicious!
You were half-right since Audrey was revealed to be working with Piper in the final moments of the episode.
Yes! I'm really excited to pull that apart and see what was going on there because obviously something was. But we don't know what.
Do you know which kills and crimes were Piper's and which were Audrey's?
I think it will be explored more next season. I definitely have strong opinions on which kills and acts Piper committed. I think everything that went to Daisy — everything that had to do with the mother — was definitely Piper because it's so personal. A lot of the phone calls were Piper, especially the ones that talked about the mother and the lies because that's what was driving her all season.
What did you think of the twist that it wasn't Brandon James' son like all the characters thought — but actually his daughter avenging his death?
I love it. One of my favorite lines was one I said in the final showdown: "And you thought it was his son that was swinging the knife. I mean, it's 2015. Sexist much?!" I thought that was so cool to change it around. You'd think it was a guy doing it, and in all my research I thought that too, that it was someone much more masculine who would have these violent tendencies.
Actors always say that it's the evil roles that are the most fun, but you only got to show your character's true colors in the final moments of the episode before Piper was shot and killed. Was that disappointing?
I don't know if I was disappointed, but it was definitely a huge relief to do that final scene. Piper had been lying to everyone the entire time. She was essentially wearing a mask throughout the entire season. To then get to release all of it at the end felt so cathartic to let it all flow out. But I would love to get to explore what was really going on behind the scenes later.
Even though Piper was definitively killed in the finale, will you be back for season two in any capacity?
I don't know. I would love to get to come back. If I had the opportunity, I would. I don't know what they have planned but we'll all find out soon.
Not only is Piper the Ghostface of the Scream TV show, she's also the Gale Weathers, too. What was it like to portray not one but two iconic characters from the Scream franchise with a twist?
It was an honor. I love the Scream franchise. I knew from the start she'd be the Gale Weathers equivalent, and those are some very big shoes to fill. Courteney Cox rocked it. She was so catty and strong, so I pulled some elements from that and put that into Piper. But I wanted to make her different, too. Piper is much more subtle and doesn't push into people's business as much. She finesses it. And then for Ghostface — I mean, Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) is the ultimate killer! I had a lot of fun playing with the knife and finding those moments of calm and explosion like he did. I wanted to have the same colors that he did.
You also got to wear the new version of the Ghostface mask that MTV created for the series. What was it like getting to finally wear the killer's mask?
That night when we filmed that scene, that was my very last day and it was a night shoot. We shot until the sun came up and then some. The first time I put the mask on, I was shaking. My whole body was so alive. I felt like I was putting on this cloak of evil. There was also some sadness to it, too. Brandon James had to wear this mask in his day-to-day life. I just felt like wearing it added this whole other dark force that was stepping onto the docks with Emma and Daisy.
On a sadder note, the finale aired only a few days after Wes Craven's passing. Did you get to work with him?
Unfortunately I didn't. We were shooting out in Baton Rouge so he didn't come to the hot, humid heat to visit us on set. But I've been a fan of his films since I was old enough to watch them and it is an honor to get to be part of that legacy that he left behind. He inspired so many filmmakers and people with his work. It's an honor to be a part of that, especially at such an important time with his passing.
Scream has already been renewed for a second season. A return date has not yet been determined. Click here to read our interview with the Scream showrunner.