David Arquette in The Quarry video game
Photo: Supermassive Games/2K
Actor David Arquette went through a strange mythology in Houston, and I’m one of the people responsible for it. In 2005, my band, The Black Math Experiment, released the song “You Cannot Kill David Arquette,” a bizarre, screaming anthem with ever-increasing stories about his physical abilities, his magical powers, and of course, his invulnerability. When Arquette found out about the tune, he sent the band a giant box of cupcakes as a thank you. Later, while promoting “The Tripper,” his 2006 slasher flick about an ax murderer obsessed with former President Ronald Reagan, Arquette visited Houston for an incredible night, covered by our own Joey Guerra.
Since then, the fantastical version of Arquette we sang/screamed about has become something of a crypt of Houston celebrities. Every time he’s in a movie, I get a million messages telling me if he survived or not. Arquette took the song even more to heart, using it as the entrance music to wrestling events and as the title of his recent documentary about his return to the ring.
Then, in 2022, Arquette’s immortality myth was shattered forever. The restart of Scream Franchise saw its character, Deputy Dewey, escape certain death multiple times and eventually meet his end at Ghostface’s knife. Now his fate in another horror vehicle depends on the speed and wisdom of the players as he stars in The Quarry, the latest Supermassive Games game published by 2K.
“I loved the experience of working on ‘The Quarry,'” says Arquette. “My favorite part was learning about all the tech. Seeing the motion capture in action and getting teaser images of the incredible art they created for it blew my mind. As a kid growing up playing video games, being involved in one at this level was a dream come true.”
Supermassive is known for games that are essentially interactive horror movies. The Quarry is intended as a spiritual follow-up to their 2015 hit Until Dawn. In it, nine teenagers must survive the night at Hackett’s Quarry while being hunted by local slashers and monsters. The Quarry will follow in the bloodstained footsteps of Until Dawn by having almost every character in the narrative die, leading to many different branching endings.
Arquette’s fate may now depend on the players, and he had to film his death to explain the players’ activities.
“As many people know, you can’t kill David Arquette, although that theory might be challenged by the fate of my character in the final ‘Scream’ and the demise of many of the characters involved in this video game given the multiple endings,” he says. “Needless to say, I had a blast with it, and it was far less messy than traditional death scenes.”
When: Released on June 10th
Where: On PC Windows, Xbox/X/S, Playstation 4/5
What is most interesting about The Quarry is how it explores the fundamental premise of the Scream films. One of the inherent ideas of the film franchise is that horror film characters make stupid decisions that a viewer would never make. The meta-extual exploration of horror tropes is a big part of how “Scream” plays. Games like The Quarry and Until Dawn essentially allow players to test the hypotheses of Scream through their interactivity.
“I love horror-based video games, and ‘The Quarry’ is the most innovative roller coaster ride out there,” says Arquette. “The way these artists use art, sound design, and shock in the controls creates a hair-raising experience jumping out of your seat. Scream laid down a lot of rules for surviving a horror movie, but there are still a few more to come up with leave to survive this video game.”
Arquette has since settled into his identity as a cult hero, both in horror and for Houston. He may not actually be immortal, but the song and his ability to take a beating live on.
“It feels great to be a legend,” he says.
Jef Rouner is a Houston-based writer.