HOLLYWOOD—Spoiler alert if you have NOT SEEN “SCREAM VI” STOP READING THIS COLUMN RIGHT NOW because there are spoilers people. I thought “Scream VI” was the second best sequel in the franchise behind “Scream 2.” It brought an excitement and intensity back to the horror franchise that I felt has been missing since the second installment. It does feel like horror is going back to the notion of franchises, where you have a bevy of installments; think of the icons like “Friday the 13th,” “Halloween” and “A Nightmare on Elm Street.”  Many of those flicks have very bad entries in the franchise, whereas with “Scream” there hasn’t been a bad movie, some have been ok, but nothing that was just downright terrible.

With that said, “Scream VI” became the highest debut at the box-office for any movies in the franchise and has set the stage for what I’m sure is a “Scream VII or Scream 7” (who knows what iteration will be used for the title). With that said, I think the seventh entry, which has not officially gotten a green light, but I expect it before the end of the week or within the next week people, it will be announced. I feel like we have entered a new trilogy and for me to be honest, I think the next sequel needs to close it out for this saga.

Yes, you have the legacy characters with Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) and Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox). We lost Dewey in the fifth entry. In the sixth chapter, we saw the return of fan favorite Kirby Reed (Hayden Panettiere) that was so fun. Her interaction with Gale and Mindy (Jasmin Savoy Brown) was fantastic. However, no legacy characters died in “Scream VI.” So going into seven, we can expect to at least see Kirby, Mindy, Sam (Melissa Barrera), Tara (Jenna Ortega) and Chad (Mason Gooding). Whether Sidney returns is still up in the air, she was not in the recent film, but her presence was made known, but honestly I didn’t miss her.

However, it feels like the writers are building towards something and there is no way we can have another entry without Sidney Prescott people because everything is connected to her. Even our new heroines Sam and Tara are tied to her because Sam is the daughter of her serial killer boyfriend Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) who killed her mother Maureen. In addition, Mindy and Chad are tied to her bestie Randy (Jamie Kennedy) who died in a shocking scene in “Scream 2.” All the fibers connect to this lady people so she has to return for the seventh which I think will FINALLY give the audience our introduction to Sam and Tara’s mother, Christina Carpenter, who has still not been seen.

Hmm, your daughters have been attacked twice by a serial killer and you are nowhere to be found. Explain that people. In addition, Christina’s tie to Sidney is huge. They were dating the same guy at the same time, and Billy had to get Christina pregnant before he was killed in the first film. The amount of story that can be fleshed out with Christina is epic, not to mention the number of secrets she could be hiding people. Did she know about Billy’s plan? Was she the catalyst that kicked off Billy’s plan to murder Maureen in a fit of jealously people? That is a possibility. In addition, we haven’t seen Tara’s father, Mr. Carpenter and Sam’s stepfather. I think his involvement in the next chapter would be vital and a great red herring or potential killer. FYI to the writers, producers and director, consider Freddie Prinze Jr. for this role because I think he would be perfect casting.

Then we have to address the elephant in the room, our survivors. We have Chad, Mindy, Sam, Tara, Gale, Kirby and Danny (Josh Segarra), Sam’s boyfriend. That is seven people and we’re going into the seventh entry, blood and risks have to be raised people. I mean if the next sequel is the end of the franchise or this particular saga people, the risks have to be huge and the deaths have to be shocking. There were audible gasps in the theater when Chad was attacked by not one, but two Ghostface and those stabs were potent and hefty. He looked like a goner and that totally was a bold move for the writers to have him survive. I think his death would have been that much more impactful, but perhaps it is the stage being set for bigger tears and tension the next go around.

I really thought Mindy was a goner during that subway scene, but then again I didn’t want to see Mindy suffer the same fate as her uncle considering she’s a horror buff. In addition, we haven’t met Mindy and Chad’s father. Is there a reason why and could he play a role going into the seventh movie? The big thing people keep asking where the next flick could be setting wise. Should it return to Woodsboro? I’m torn, if it’s the end of the end because it started in Woodsboro it should end there. However, at the same time, I think it would be intriguing if the film took a small slice from “Scream 3” with a new movie being made and perhaps some of our survivors being the stars in the film. Let’s say, Chad, Tara, Mindy, Gale, even Kirby. The only difference if the movie route is being taken, let’s have the film already completed, and the movie is having its big premiere or has just been released and a surge of killings transpire that raises the stakes in a way unlike we’ve seen before. Whoever our killer or killers are that reveal in my personal opinion has to tie back to the 1996 classic. It has to go back to the beginning in a way that delivers a reveal that blows the audience to pieces when the mask is taken off people.

We’re going to lose characters we care about and it’s going to hurt, but that just makes the story that much palpable when it does occur. I think the key is Sidney Prescott. Could we have another movie without her? Yes, but I think it would be a major mistake not to find a way to bring the iconic character back to the fray and wrap up her story for once and all. Rather she lives or dies that is up for debate, but she’s critical to the story in my opinion and it’s time to really subvert the rules, the tropes and the expectations.

Hell, there has been buzz for years about having one of the survivor’s become the killer because it has never happened. It is indeed a possibility and trust me if that Easter egg was posed talk about raising the stakes in the saga it would be quite compelling to say the least. The amount of red herrings would be so massive it would not disappoint. Casting note, Oliver Stark from the series “9-1-1” would be perfect casting as a possible Ghostface or red herring character. The guy has a charm about him that would be interesting for the franchise. Can you trust or can you not?

Side note: because I know I’m not writing the script, how clever would an opening be if it was a scene being filmed for a new ‘Stab’ movie starring one of our survivors, and surprise a Ghostface killer manages to infiltrate the set and actually KILL one of our survivors as the scene is being filmed before escaping? That would be an absolute touch of genius that would leave audiences in stitches people.