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Melissa Barrera Talks About Fired from ‘Scream’ Was a Revelation

@Photo by Philippe Bossé/Philippe Bossé – © 2022 PARAMOUNT PICTURES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Fallout from the Israeli-Hamas conflict over Gaza has left its mark in the entertainment industry, with Melissa Barrera being one of the prime casualties. Barrera, one of the stars of Scream 7, was fired from her role in November over pro-Palestinian comments the outspoken performer made on social media.

Her posting read in part: “Cornering everyone together, with no where to go, no electricity no water…People have learnt nothing from our histories. And just like our histories, people are still silently watching it all happen. THIS IS GENOCIDE & ETHNIC CLEANSING.”

But at Sundance this week, Barrera said the brouhaha over her postings has become a “big awakening” for which she is grateful. She was quoted by the Associated Press as saying, “Honestly, I think I finally am becoming who I’m supposed to be in life, and the last few months have been a big awakening of that. I’m just so grateful for everything that’s happened.”

Barrera defended her comments on the situation in Gaza, saying: “As a [L]atina, a proud Mexicana, I feel the responsibility of having a platform that allows me the privilege of being heard, and therefore I have tried to use it to raise awareness about issues I care about and to lend my voice to those in need.”

Shortly after Barrera’s comments were posted, Scream’s producer Spyglass Media declared that “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,” which could be interpreted as a rebuff to her remarks.

The very next day it was disclosed that Barrera’s co-star Jenna Ortega and Scream’s director Christopher Landon would also be departing, raising speculation about the future of the franchise. Neve Campbell had also left the franchise over a pay dispute, as was Ortega. Landon, who had only recently replaced the Radio Silence collective as the director, was quoted as saying it was “a dream job that turned into a nightmare.”

Recalling a reunion she recently had with the cast members of Scream, Barrera was quoted in Deadline as saying, “We’re family for life. If we’re ever in the vicinity of each other, we always find each other and that’s what happened at that event.”

Check out more of Edward’s articles

Edward Moran
Edward Moran
Edward Moran began his journalistic career many decades ago as a theater and cinema reviewer for Show Business and the New York Theater Review. More recently he contributed film reviews to and Movie Sleuth. His writings have appeared in publications as diverse as the Times Literary Supplement, Publishers Weekly, the Paris Review, and the Massachusetts Review. Moran also edited a memoir by Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker Christine Choy. He served as literary advisor to her film Hyam Plutzik: American Poet, which was the keynote film in the American Perspectives series at the 2007 Zebra Poetry Film Festival in Berlin.


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