Melissa Barrera Opens Up About Scream Firing

The horror world went into an uproar last October when news of Melissa Barrera’s firing from the next installment of the Scream franchise went public, but the actress has stayed relatively quiet until now.

In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Barrera opens up about her unexpected exit from the film, which was attributed to her early support for Palestine on social media. Her posts, which compared the conflict in the region to genocide and ethnic cleansing, were enough for production company Spyglass to terminate her and release a statement in November stating, “We have zero tolerance for antisemitism or the incitement of hate in any form, including false references to genocide, ethnic cleansing, Holocaust distortion or anything that flagrantly crosses the line into hate speech.”

“None of this makes me happy,” Barrera says concerning her exit from the Scream franchise. “It was just all sad because I really, deeply care about the franchise. It’s just bad that it had to happen like that.”

Now, Barrera is promoting her new movie, Abigail, from the directing team Radio Silence, who previously helmed Scream (2022) and Scream VI.

“Melissa is incredibly strong,” says Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, one half of the Radio Silence duo. “You see it in her performances. When you’re friends with her, you feel it in just being with her.”

“All I can say is that it is very important for me to raise my voice for those who don’t have one,” Barrera says. “It seems weird to have a platform and not use it for that.”

It wasn’t just Barrera who left Scream VII. Jenna Ortega quit in solidarity with her on-screen sister and Radio Silence was replaced, temporarily, by Christopher Landon. Tyler Gillett, the other member of Radio Silence, says the choice to leave the franchise was not theirs.

“We got exited,” he says simply, which Bettinelli-Olpin confirms.

“We’ll be sad that there’s not going to be an end to the Sam Carpenter story, but in our minds, we designed Scream VI so that the story feels complete,” Bettinelli-Olpin adds.

Since news has come out that Neve Campbell will be returning for Scream VII, Barrera declines to comment if she has spoken to Campbell at all, but praises other cast members like Jasmin Savoy Brown, Liana Liberato, and Jack Quaid, who have remained by her side.

Ultimately, Barrera doesn’t completely rule out a return for her portrayal of Sam Carpenter, but chances are pretty slim for now.

“I’ve learned to never say never, but also a lot of things would have to happen for Sam to come back,” Barrera explains. “For now, next page, next chapter, and then we’ll see what the future holds.”

Her next page, Abigail, opens April 19, 2024. You can read the full article from The Hollywood Reporter here.