|Created by Kevin Williamson|
Occupation News Reporter, Author
Spouse Dwight 'Dewey' Riley
|Portrayed by Courteney Cox|
Played by Courteney Cox
Creator Kevin Williamson
|Aliases Gale Riley
Location Woodsboro, California Windsor College, Ohio Hollywood, California
Movies Scream, Scream 4, Scream 2, Scream 3
Similar Dwight 'Dewey' Riley, Sidney Prescott, Casey Becker, Randy Meeks, Cotton Weary
Gale Weathers is a fictional character of the Scream series. The character was created by Kevin Williamson and is portrayed by Friends star Courteney Cox. She first appeared in Scream (1996), followed by three sequels: Scream 2 (1997), Scream 3 (2000) and Scream 4 (2011). The character appears in the Scream films as an ambitious, strong-willed journalist and writer who is initially built up as an antagonist, but ultimately joins forces with Sidney Prescott and Dewey Riley in order to investigate and stop the Ghostface murders.
Cox was nominated for three awards for her work as Gale Weathers and won a Teen Choice Award for Film – Choice Chemistry shared with David Arquette.
Gale Weathers is a news reporter for Top Story and author of The Woodsboro Murders. Gale has been punched by Sidney Prescott multiple times. Courteney Cox describes her character as "a very strong willed, manipulative woman who just wants to make it and wants to be the best and biggest at what she is, which is a newscaster." Gale has had many encounters with Ghostface, in one of her encounters she and Dewey are kissing and a video comes on of Ghostface's past murder victims and then it shows Gale and Dewey. Dewey runs to Ghostface to stop him and Gale runs into a recording room and sees Dewey get stabbed, but escapes. Gale was portrayed by Jennifer Jolie in the Stab film franchise, Jennifer Jolie ends up dying because of the order of deaths in Stab. Gale was shot in the auditorium at Sidney's college. Gale has a very complex relationship with Dewey Riley whom later marries her.
Her first cinematic appearance was in Scream (1996) as the fame-seeking reporter who has written a novel on Maureen Prescott's death, explaining how she thinks Cotton Weary has been falsely identified as the murderer. When she arrives in Woodsboro with her cameraman, she is rude, bossy and goes to great lengths to get a good story (such as videotaping unsuspecting teens at a house party). Gale has chemistry throughout the film with Deputy Dewey Riley as they investigate the murders. When she finds her cameraman dead near Stu's house, she enters the house and helps Sidney Prescott by shooting one of the serial killers, Billy Loomis.
Gale Weathers' second appearance was in Scream 2. She has written a successful book on the events that took place in the first film called The Woodsboro Murders that has turned into a film called Stab. Sidney, although grateful she saved her life, refuses to do an interview with Cotton Weary, who is also seeking fame at the campus. Gale and Dewey's relationship, although strained at first, eventually turns heated. The killer pursues Gale after repeatedly stabbing Dewey, who is left for dead. In the climax, Gale is brought in by Mrs. Loomis, known as Debbie Salt throughout the movie, to the school theater. Mickey shoots Gale after Mrs. Loomis shoots him and she falls off the stage. However, the bullet bounces off Gale's ribs, allowing her to survive. Once the whole ordeal is over, Mickey suddenly springs to life and is shot to death by Sidney and Gale. During the end of the film, Gale finds out that Dewey is not dead and goes with him to the hospital to recover.
The third appearance of Gale occurred in Scream 3. Unlike the first two films, Gale has no intention of getting a good story or seeking fame. Instead, she merely wants conclusion over the mysterious past of Maureen Prescott, whom she wrote a successful book about. After writing another book on the copycat killings that took place in Windsor College, she is informed that Cotton Weary has been murdered and immediately visits the set of Stab 3, based on Sidney and her experiences. Gale is reunited with Dewey after meeting the actress who portrays her, Jennifer Jolie. Gale and Dewey's relationship has been broken since the events of the second film, and they often argue. However, near the film's end, they reconcile their relationship. Gale is attacked by Ghostface for her ridiculous haircut, but is saved by Dewey. She survives the climax in the Hollywood home of John Milton. At the end, Dewey asks Gale to marry him, which she accepts.
Gale's fourth appearance is in Scream 4. Now married for ten years and having taken on her husband's name, Gale tries to reinvent herself by writing fiction but she struggles with writer's block. The murders reoccurring in Woodsboro are a major opportunity for Gale as a writer. Dewey, however, doesn't agree with his wife being a part of the investigation. Gale then decides to work alone and undercover at a Stab-a-thon party, where she believes the killer will strike next. Gale's plan to catch the killer fails when she is attacked by the killer. Dewey arrives in time to save her, but the killer quickly stabs Gale in the shoulder and escapes. Having been in a critical condition, she is recovering well and manages to put the pieces together that Jill Roberts is the true killer. Gale distracts Jill in the final confrontation long enough for Sidney to shock Jill with a defibrillator. Gale has survived once again. She then tends to an injured Dewey on the floor.
Casting and development
The production wanted a recognizable face for the role of news reporter Gale Weathers, offering it to both Brooke Shields and Janeane Garofalo. Cox, who was starring in the highly successful NBC sitcom Friends at the time, was not considered due to her history of playing softer, kinder characters. Cox however lobbied hard for the role for that reason, wishing to play a "bitch" character, her efforts ultimately succeeding when she was cast.