'Scream' Stars Defend Neve Campbell Following Salary Dispute

Neve Campbell walked away from the upcoming Scream 6 due to a salary dispute, and many of her colleagues are on her side. Actors Matthew Lillard and Jamie Kennedy have both now spoken out in support of Campbell. Both suggested that the studios are trying to underplay Campbell's value as an actress and her legendary status in the horror genre.

Campbell announced at the beginning of June that she would not be returning for Scream 6 because of the way her contract negotiations went. According to a report by The L.A. Times, she said: "As a woman I have had to work extremely hard in my career to establish my value, especially when it comes to Scream. I felt the offer that was presented to me did not equate to the value I have brought to the franchise." Kennedy posted a YouTube video where he encouraged Campbell to stick to her guns on this issue and tried to persuade fans to take her side as well.

"Sidney Prescott is the center of Scream," Kennedy said. "Neve Campbell is the face of Scream... The franchise gets rebooted. The franchise is more popular than ever... How can you make Scream without Sidney Prescott? ...It's her story, her POV, her pain. Everything is her. She's the heroine."

Kennedy played the character Randy Meeks in four of the existing five Scream movies. Meanwhile, Lillard played Stu Macher in the first movie and then made cameo appearances in a few of the sequels. He has now spoken out for Campbell in a few different venues, including a tweet that read: "The fact that Neve Campbell isn't getting paid her worth is straight-up sexism. I think it's horrible. There. I said it."

Lillard expanded on this in a Twitter Spaces conversation last week where he compared her role in Scream to Tom Cruise's role in the Top Gun franchise. He said: "Did Tom Cruise take less money for [Top Gun: Maverick]? F- no dude. So why is a woman supposed to take less? Why wouldn't you pay her more as the series goes on? ...Was Scream 5 a hit or not a hit? It was a smash hit. Did they make a s- ton of money? Yes... Should Neve Campbell be paid for the work she's done in five movies of a franchise? Yes."

There's no indication that Scream 6 will pause production to wait for more negotiations with Campbell. The movie stars Jenna Ortega, Hayden Panettiere, Courteney Cox, Dermot Mulroney, Melissa Barrera, Mason Gooding and Jasmin Savoy Brown. It is currently slated for release on March 31, 2023.