8:00pm PT by Sydney Bucksbaum
'Scream' Boss on That Killer Finale Twist and Season 2's "World of Possibilities"
[Warning: This story contains spoilers from the Scream season one finale.]
Scream’s latest killer has been unmasked.
Much to the shock of all the characters, true crime podcaster Piper Shaw (Amelia Rose Blaire) was the one terrorizing Emma (Willa Fitzgerald) and the town of Lakewood… because they were half-sisters. Piper was the mysterious child of Brandon James and Daisy, and she wanted revenge for her father’s death. So not only was Piper the Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) of the show, she was also the Ghostface.
The first season finale of MTV’s TV series based on Wes Craven’s horror film franchise may have answered the question of who was behind the new Ghostface mask, but it left a huge mystery to be solved in season two: Piper wasn’t working alone. Emma’s friend Audrey (Bex-Taylor Klaus) was actually in league with her, though it’s unclear what acts or murders Audrey committed, if any.
The Hollywood Reporter spoke with co-showrunner Jill Blotevogel to discuss choosing Piper as the killer, Audrey’s involvement and what lies ahead for season two and beyond.
Even though Piper was definitively killed in the final moments with not one but two gunshots, will she be back for season two in any capacity, like flashbacks?
That’s always a possibility. That’s what we did with Bella Thorne’s character after she was killed in the pilot. She came back for a scene to add new information to the mystery. TV is a great world for leaving that possibility open. We’re going to start finding out things starting with clues that were dropped in the final moments of the finale in terms of what was going on behind-the-scenes, what was that relationship we hinted at between Audrey and Piper in the final moments, so it’s definitely possible. But we haven’t really worked out how much we are going to be looking backwards versus how much we’re going to move forward. But it’s always possible to have flashbacks to tell the behind-the-scenes story. How did she do this? Why was she plotting this?
How far are you into planning the future of the show?
It’s very early. We are really taking our time and we are seeing how people respond to the finale. We didn’t have a lot of time in our first season to really plan ahead and there are a lot of things we were still figuring out, like as Noah says, “How do you turn a slasher movie into a TV series?” Doing a second season, we do have the added benefits of the movie franchise.
Will you focus season two on new characters?
Moving forward, they can find a new case in the main characters’ lives. I don’t think we’re going to leave Lakewood High. We’ll probably pick up not too long after the finale of season one. What’s great is we have these characters we’ve established, the audience has come to care about, and they’re still alive. We can return to them and guide back into their lives and relationships. All these relationships have been rocked. I think giving them time to adjust and come back to see where they all are is going to be an incredible opportunity as well as a new mystery that will of course crop up.
You previously said that you had the identity of the killer in mind from the start, but did you ever consider making the killer someone other than Piper over the course of the season?
We did, yes. We discussed a lot of possibilities. We have to with something like this. If you set out with one person or scenario in mind, you almost find yourself writing to avoid that and keep people from guessing that, and you have to fight the instinct to make it too clear. It’s a bizarre business trying to create the perfect whodunit. You have to go through mini-suspicion arcs with different characters and we did. We considered a lot of input from the Weinstein Company and Dimension and [executive producer] Bob Weinstein and MTV, and it was really figuring out what our show was going to look like.
What were some of the other options you considered?
Truthfully, some of the things we figured out and other options we were considering might figure into future seasons of the show. It’s not to say that any of that was wasted creative energy. We have a lot of really fun scenarios worked out. As you saw from the ending of the episode, there’s still a lot of mystery to be uncovered.
Speaking of that other mystery, Audrey has been in league with Piper the whole time. Does that mean Piper wasn’t behind the mask for every kill you showed?
The only act that can be verified is the attack in the abandoned auto dealership where the masked figure attacked Will and Piper. It’s safe to assume that was Audrey doing that. What we like is not in terms of the murders themselves, there is no concrete evidence that Audrey was committing anything illegal. We know Piper is the confessed killer at the end of season one, but we are leaving a world of possibilities open in terms of Audrey’s involvement. That is part of the mystery that we are going to dig into in season two. In other words, I don’t want to say [Laughs].
Why was everyone, both on the show and fans, so convinced that the killer was a man? Why do you think that no one considered that Brandon and Daisy had a daughter?
Part of it was manipulated by Piper. One of the things we liked about making Piper the killer, her character was very much influenced by Sarah Koenig from Serial. The idea of someone telling the story so passionately from a completely objective point of view is something that was so fun to think about if that person was manipulating everything. They say they’re the perfect objective observer and yet they have a story they want to tell. It’s the perfect self-promotion while saying this has nothing to do with me. She influenced what we thought and it was also the idea of planting a few things here and there. The Scream movies haven’t always made the killer a man but there is something about the idea of someone who’s doing this that leads you to guess that. Look back to the first Scream movie, and Kieran gets a bum rap because everyone assumes we’re following the first movie. It was a mass misconception. It was a lot of Piper’s doing, the way that she phrased things, the information she gave to Emma. The audience was in Emma’s shoes and therefore was manipulated as well.
What are you most excited to explore in season two?
I see a lot of possibility in Audrey. She’s a character who people love and remember her as much for her fire as well as her intelligence and her goodness. When people question that goodness and start to question her motives, something like that is fascinating. There’s a difference between suspecting that Audrey’s involved versus suspecting Emma being involved. Audrey just has this darkness in her that we can all relate to. She’s been bullied, she’s been picked on and that’s so universal. Digging into her character and her involvement, when the people around her start figuring out things, it’s going to bring up some really tough situations.
So is Audrey the new villain next season?
There are elements to creating that heroic anti-hero that worked so beautifully in Hannibal and other shows out there that I think, because we love Audrey, we’re dying to see what’s going to happen to her in season two. Everyone thought she was off the table after that episode where she was a suspect, and then Emma helped free her and prove her “innocence.” So maybe if Emma hadn’t stepped forward, maybe Will would still be alive. The truth is going to trickle down to all the characters and they’ll realize maybe things could have gone differently and we’ll see their emotional repercussions as well. I’m really excited to see that trickle-down effect. We’re going to see the real aftermath of something like this.
What did you think of the finale? Check back after the West Coast broadcast ends for our interview with the killer.