Happy Birthday, Wes Craven! How to Host a Party in His Honor

You probably don't know horror maven Wes Craven personally, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't throw a birthday party in his honor tonight. The director, writer, producer, and sometimes actor is 72.

But really, don't worry if you can't put this together by tonight -- because you can throw a Wes Craven dinner party any night of the week. In honor of the man who brought us horror legends such as A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Hills Have Eyes, and the Scream series (the man's working in his fifth decade), here are some suggestions on how to throw a killer shindig: 

  • Craven may not have been a musician, but he chose composers for his films, and A Nightmare on Elm Street has one beautiful score (thank you, Charles Bernstein). Choose it as the soundtrack to your night, especially when you sit down to dine. Using mostly synths, it creates an exciting but soothing atmosphere, electricity in the air, a feeling that anything can happen at any moment. But be mindful of your surroundings when you play this score. It's so good that the first comment under this video on YouTube reads: "Is it weird that im getting off to this?" courtesy of  EUPHONIUMMAN31393.
  • Costumes for some people are a must -- we like those people. Even if this is a serious gathering for intellectual discussion, wear costumes -- sheeeit, demand that costumes be mandatory. Some examples include Freddy Krueger, sexy or not; Swamp Thing; if you wear the Scream mask, you can be Ghostface. Wanna be a vampire? Dress as Maximillian (the character of Eddie Murphy in Vampire in Brooklyn). Or be Wes Craven himself (he usually sports a thin, white beard.)

For Maximillian ideas:

  • If you can afford it, hire a butler. Let the butler be Dewey Riley, in character and all. (Remember Dewey is the deputy sheriff in the Scream movies.) Whenever the butler enters the room, have Dewey's theme music play -- that little upbeat quirky tune. Then everyone will know the butler is present to help, and they may ask for some more salt or a clean knife. If you can't hire one, then you should be Dewey, because you're the host. Yes! You're the sheriff. (You may have wanted to be the sheriff anyways.) This melody is wonderful. When it plays, it signifies everything is going to be OK. It's an instant relaxer. (It doesn't really pick up until second 35.)

    • And if you use flowers as a centerpiece, make sure they are not a dozen black roses, please. Allegedly, Craven's second marriage ended after his wife had an affair with Sharon Stone. The day the divorce was finalized, Stone sent Craven that type of bouquet. So no black roses, no matter how pretty they are.

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