'Scream' is 25 years old: Where are the cast now?

The masked Ghostface Killer first appeared in 1996 slasher movie 'Scream'. (Credit: Dimension Films)
The Ghostface killer from the Scream movies is 25 years old. (Paramount)

This article is part of Yahoo's 'On This Day' series

It is 25 years since a slasher film quite unlike any other before it ripped through cinema screens.

On 20 December 1996, Scream was released, altering the horror genre and cleaning up at the box office.

Director Wes Craven had already given the world A Nightmare on Elm Street, but here he went full meta before meta was even a thing.

Scream scared its audience while giving them a knowing wink about the genre it was simultaneously homaging and reinventing.

The whodunnit asked viewers to work out the identity of the masked Ghostface killer terrorising the fictional town of Woodsboro, California.

Neve Campbell (“Sidney Prescott”), left, and Courteney Cox (“Gale Weathers”) star in Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group's
Neve Campbell and Courteney Cox return for the upcoming instalment in the Scream franchise. (Paramount)

It spawned three sequels, while the fifth instalment, also titled Scream, lands in cinemas in January.

It reunites much of the main cast from the original film a quarter of a century ago.

So, what happened to the principal actors from the 1996 Scream and where are they now?

Neve Campbell

Actress Neve Campbell attends the
Neve Campbell at the Skyscraper premiere in New York in July 2018. (PA)

Campbell has played Sidney Prescott in all four Scream movies so far, and returns to the character in the fifth instalment next month.

Before the first Scream, she was best known for her role as Julia Salinger in the TV series Party of Five, and as Bonnie Harper in supernatural teen horror The Craft, which was released in May 1996.


Where are the stars of the Spice Girls movie now?

The real-life agent who inspired Tom Cruise's Jerry Maguire

How John Lennon's death was announced during a live NFL game

Why 'Frozen' was a Disney classic 70 years in the making

Campbell began her career as a ballet dancer and produced and starred in the 2003 movie, The Company, about the subject.

In 2018, she starred alongside Dwayne Johnson in the action movie Skyscraper.

Campbell is set to star in the upcoming Netflix series, The Lincoln Lawyer.

Courteney Cox

Courteney Cox arrives at the UCLA IoES 2019 Hollywood For Science Gala held at the Private Estate of Jeanne & Tony Pritzker in Los Angeles, CA on Thursday, February 21, 2019. (Photo By Sthanlee B. Mirador/Sipa USA)
Courteney Cox plays Gale Weathers in the Scream movies. (PA)

Cox plays TV reporter Gale Weathers in the Scream movies, but is best known as Monica Geller from Friends.

She got her break after appearing in the Bruce Springsteen video for Dancing in the Dark, before appearing in Masters of the Universe, Cocoon: The Return and Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.

Cox married her Scream co-star David Arquette in 1999 - the couple divorced in 2013.

Courteney Cox and David Arquette in the first Scream film. (Paramount)

She starred in and produced the TV sitcom Cougar Town, which ran from six seasons between 2009 and 2015, directing a number of episodes. She has also directed two movies.

In 2021, she appeared in Friends: The Reunion, which reunited the main cast of the hit show.

She has been in a relationship with Snow Patrol’s Johnny McDaid since 2013.

David Arquette

HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 11:  (L-R) Actors Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette arrive at the world premiere of The Weinstein Company's
Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette at the world premiere of Scream 4 in 2011. (Getty)

Arquette played Deputy Sheriff Dewey Riley in the original Scream, and returned for Scream 2, Scream 3 and Scream 4. He will also reprise the role in the upcoming Scream.

He met Cox on the set of the original movie and the couple married in 1999, divorcing in 2013.

In 2000, Arquette became a professional wrestler and won the WCW World Heavyweight Championship. He would go on to wrestle in WWE, before retiring in June 2021.

The 2020 documentary, You Cannot Kill David Arquette, followed his return to the ring.

Rose McGowan

Actor Rose McGowan attends the GQ Men of the Year Awards at the Tate Modern in London, Britain, September 5, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls
Rose McGowan has spoken out in recent years about sexual assault and haraassment in the movie industry. (Reuters)

McGowan played Tatum Riley in the first Scream movie, but was perhaps best known for her role as Paige Matthews in the TV show Charmed from 2001 to 2006.

She would later star in Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez’s double-feature Grindhouse in 2007.

In 2017, McGowan accused former movie producer and convicted sex offender Harvey Weinstein of raping her in 1997.

Rose McGowan and Neve Campbell in 1996's Scream. (Paramount)

Her decision to speak out was a huge boost to the Me Too movement and set off a chain of revelations from other women that eventually led to Weinstein being sentenced in 2020 to 23 years in prison.

McGowan now lives in Mexico.

Matthew Lillard

US Actor Matthew Lillard arrives to the Premiere of 'Finch' in West Hollywood, California on November 2, 2021. (Photo by Michael Tran / AFP) (Photo by MICHAEL TRAN/AFP via Getty Images)
Matthew Lillard at a premiere in West Hollywood, California, in November 2021. (AFP via Getty Images)

Lillard played Stu Macher in the first Scream movie, and went on to play Shaggy in the live-action Scooby-Doo films.

He appeared in the George Clooney movie The Descendants in 2011 and starred in the third season of Twin Peaks in 2017. The following year, he appeared in the TV series Good Girls.

Most of Lillard’s recent work has been as the voice of Shaggy in direct-to-DVD animated Scooby-Doo films.

Skeet Ulrich

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 07: Skeet Ulrich  at Build Studio on October 7, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Jason Mendez/Getty Images)
Skeet Ulrich pictured in October 2019 in New York City. (Getty Images)

Ulrich appeared in both 1996’s Scream and The Craft with Campbell. He played Billy Loomis in Scream.

He also starred in the Oscar-winning movie, As Good As It Gets, in 1997.

Ulrich and his brother were kidnapped by his father when he was six years old, and he suffered from poor health as a child, undergoing open-heart surgery when he was 10.

He starred in four seasons of the TV show Riverdale between 2017 and 2021.

Drew Barrymore

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 10: Drew Barrymore attends iHeartRadio Z100 Jingle Ball 2021 on December 10, 2021 in New York City. Photo: Jeremy Smith/imageSPACE/Sipa USA
Drew Barrymore pictured in New York City on 10 December 2021. (PA)

Before playing Casey Becker in Scream, Barrymore was best known for her role in ET the Extra-Terrestrial.

Her character’s fate in Scream’s opening scene shocked audiences and established immediately that this would be a different kind of slasher film.

Drew Barrymore appears in the famous opening sequence of 'Scream' in 1996. (Credit: Dimension Films)
Drew Barrymore in the famous opening sequence of Scream in 1996. (Paramount)

Read more: Scream director Wes Craven was almost ‘fired' over Drew Barrymore scene

Barrymore went on to star in The Wedding Singer, Never Been Kissed, Charlie’s Angels and Donnie Darko. She runs her own production company, Flower Films.

She starred in and produced the Netflix horror-comedy Santa Clarita Diet for three seasons between 2017 and 2019.

She launched her own daytime talk show in September 2020, and announced in March 2021 that she was on an indefinite hiatus from acting.