By Jennifer Armstrong
Updated March 23, 2010 at 03:00 PM EDT
Credit: Everett Collection

Image Credit: Everett CollectionToday in remake/reimagining/reboot/unnecessary-sequel/next-generation news: Scream 4 is finally ready to start shooting this spring, according to Variety, with Wes Craven once again directing and Neve Campbell, David Arquette, and Courteney Cox set to step back into their original roles along with a group of younger actors. The temptation to revisit such a successful franchise — especially one that was so fresh and surprising when it started in 1996 — makes sense. The first two Screams grossed more than $170 million worldwide, after all, and Scream 3 made more than $160 mil in 2000. You can imagine the executives at Dimension Films poring over spreadsheets from the past 20 years, looking for upticks in revenue, and deciding to make more of whatever caused those.

But it seems unlikely that the studio can make the magic happen again, especially with a series whose appeal was largely based on its campy parody approach. Will it be a parody of a parody? Does that mean it’s serious, but ironically serious? Or so ironic it’s not ironic? How postmodern can you get? Not to mention that remakes are not only a dime a dozen these days, but are also just as likely to fail as any brand new idea. And yes, I consider this a remake even with the original cast returning — more than 10 years has passed since the last Scream, so this feels more similar to a Melrose Place or 90210. Screams 2 and 3? Sequels, since they were all within four years of each other. This sounds like more of a Next Generation approach, with oh-look-they’re-old-now parts for the original cast members, like Jennie Garth as a guidance counselor on 90210 and Thomas Calabro as the father of one of the tenants on Melrose. And look how well that turned out for both of them. Then again, Star Trek just pulled off a similar feat last year, so who knows? A great story can trump a risky idea.

What do you think, PopWatchers? Will Scream 4 be more Melrose or Star Trek?

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