Friday, April 15, 2011

WOMAN OF THE WEEK: NEVE CAMPBELL

In celebration of tonight's release of SCRE4M, Day of the Woman is going to feature one of the premiere Scream Queens of the 1990's.  Although Neve Campbell doesn't have a laundry list of horror films to her resume, her portrayals as Bonnie in the witch movie The Craft and her role as Sidney Prescott in the SCREAM franchise have permanently earned her a spot in the hearts of horror fanatics everywhere.

Born in Guelph, Ontario, Neve Campbell was the daughter of a yoga instructor/psychologist and a high school drama teacher.  Her grandparents ran a theatre company in the Netherlands and performed as well.  It was only logical that Neve would also found herself bitten by the acting bug.  Her parents divorced when she was two years old and she resided most of her childhood with her father.  When she was nine years old, she moved into the National Ballet.  When she was around fifteen years old,  Neve Campbell switched her focus from dancing to acting and performed at the Canon Theatre's production of The Phantom of the Opera.

Her first widely released film was for The Craft.  Starring alongside Robin Tunney, Fairuza Balk, Christine Taylor, and fellow SCREAM actor Skeet Ulrich, Neve Campbell played telekinetic "Bonnie", one of the four members of the coven shown in the film.  Surprisingly, the most memorable scene from Bonnie's character wasn't performing witchcraft, but rather the painful treatment she endured to try and get rid of the burn scars plaguing her back.  After the scars were treated due to witch magic, the character takes a major switch from playing such a shy and insecure girl, to a cocky and conceited girly-girl.  The flawless character switch Neve managed to portray was highly impressive and a sure signal for the talent she possessed within.  

It was later that year when Neve Campbell would secure her spot in the horror movie hall of fame.  Joining the ranks of Jamie Lee Curtis, Nancy Thompson, and the like, Neve Campbell emerged as the fresh faced final girl of Wes Craven's SCREAM.  Campbell revisited her role three times in all of the sequels from the original film.  Apparently Drew Barrymoore was intended to star in the film, but due to scheduling conflicts, the role was given to Campbell instead.  Wes Craven saw her performance on the television show Party of Five and is quoted to say "She could best embody a character who was "innocent" but also able to handle herself while dealing with the demanding physicality and emotions of the role".  Neve actually almost didn't take the role after finishing The Craft, but was willing to do so as it would be her first feature starring role.  It's safe to say that she made the right decision in taking the job.  Her role as Sidney Prescott even earned her a Best Actress award at the 1997 Saturn Awards.  Over ten years from her first performance as Sidney Prescott, Neve Campbell is returning to the big screen for one final hurrah with the rest of her SCREAM companions.  SCRE4M opens in theatres everywhere tonight. 


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