Jasmin Savoy Brown

Jasmin Savoy Brown Is More Than Just the “Strong Femme Lead”

Across the silver and small screen, the star of Yellowjackets and Scream is giving visibility to queer stories.

For fans of the Scream movies, the famous “rules” scene has become a thing of legend. Providing one of the few moments of levity in the iconic films, the horror movie “rules” get broken down for the current cast in vivid detail, leaving it up to them to decide which to follow (usually leading to their own demise). But in Scream VI, the latest installment in the storied franchise, Jasmin Savoy Brown, who plays Mindy Meeks-Martin, does it while wearing a T-shirt emblazoned with “Strong Femme Lead.” This time around, it hit different.

“I think it's pretty iconic,” Brown says of the scene. “If anyone dresses up as Mindy for Halloween, I would love to see them in that shirt.”

Scream 6


Those are just a few of the words that come to mind when you think of the success that Brown has amassed in the last year. Her portrayal of Meeks-Martin (the niece of “rules” originator Randy Meeks) debuted with Scream V in 2022 and cemented her status in Scream Queen history as the first openly queer character in the horror franchise — a major breakthrough for the films, which are so beloved that they’re considered canon in the queer community.  

The latest edition of Scream, which debuted in March 2023, brings Ghostface to New York City, bringing an entirely different level of horror to the movie.

“I thought New York was the perfect place for Ghostface to go nuts. It's just so much bigger, there's so many more people, there's more opportunities for attacks and kills,” Brown says of the change. “There's more opportunities for someone to be Ghostface.”

Jasmin Savoy Brown

Jonny Marlow

In one of the most harrowing scenes in the film, Ghostfast stalks Brown’s Mindy on the subway, a sequence that expertly captures the lingering  tension that any New York City subway ride can provide — nevermind one where Ghostface is waiting for you.

“Filming it was spooky and really fun. Oh god, it was so scary.  Something truly happens when the stunt people put on the Ghostface outfit. Before that, we're all goofy on set. Even if they're in the full gown, but don't have their mask on, we're like, ‘Hehe, haha,’’ Brown explains. “And then as soon as they put on the mask, it's like the energy shifts. It's real and your body doesn't know the difference when you're in a scene like that. It’s like, ‘Oh my god, someone's staring at me on the subway, someone's going to get me.’”

But back to the shirt.

“Our wardrobe head came to me and she was like, ‘Look, I think Mindy's in college now and she's exploring her sexuality and her gender, probably, really for the first time. Obviously, Mindy was out in Woodsboro, but perhaps didn't have the most access to information and education,” Brown says before adding a few tidbits that fans are sure to eat up. “And so we were like, ‘Yeah, she's totally taking gender studies and feminist film, and feminist theory, and all of this stuff and she's probably going overboard like so many of us do at that age.’ And I like to think that she made that shirt herself.”  

It all came together to create a poetic Easter egg that Wes Craven himself would have left behind for viewers to catch.

But Mindy Meeks-Martin isn’t the only role where Brown is giving visibility to stories about queer youth and self-discovery. As young Taissa in Showtime’s blockbuster series Yellowjackets, viewers are watching the blossoming relationship between Brown’s Taissa and Liv Hewson’s Van — albeit amid the backdrop of surviving a plane crash and being stranded in the Canadian wilderness.

Yellowjackets earned its cast widespread critical acclaim after its break-the-internet caliber debut season and its second is already must-see TV. So far, the writers have wasted absolutely zero time making sure viewers know that things are very different this time around. First, the girls are hungry. And while Taissa is still sleepwalking in both the ‘96 and present-day timelines, things are certainly escalating. The implications of Taissa’s actions while she is asleep are becoming more dire and dangerous — especially for her relationship with Van.

“I'm excited for fans to get to see some of the dynamics when the roles shift within the relationship,” she says. “The first couple episodes, you begin to see that. But the relationship is going to be tested and you'll see them navigate that and how much they really do love each other.” 

Jasmin Savoy Brown

Jonny Marlow

Ahead, we talk more about Brown’s scene with Hayden Panettiere, how the Yellowjackets cast stays grounded while filming, her recent music video, and more.

I’m curious about what filming Scream VI with Kirby Reed [played by Hayden Panettiere] was like. I thought it was really tender and lovely.
Yeah, that was special. Knowing that I was going to get to work with Hayden, who not only is, of course, iconic in Scream 4, but also just has had a really long career and has a lot of experience in this industry. It was so exciting, and I was just so curious to see what she'd be like.

That scene was sweet. It did feel tender, it felt like a really special opportunity and a special moment in my career to get to work with someone that I grew up watching and have this little banter. And it was nice that we had the right chemistry for it and the directors were really happy. Actually, I think we got through it really fast. It took maybe half an hour.

What can viewers expect from Taissa on Yellowjackets this season?
I think that Taissa is in a very different emotional place this season, both '96 and current-day Taissa, which is funny because Tawny and I didn't really talk about that before shooting, but they kind of mirror each other.  In season 1 '96, Taissa kept it all together, was very much in control, both of the group and her emotions and her state of mind, her state of being, until Van's attack. And I think this season, she does not have as much control. She does not have as much control of the group. She does not have as much control of her emotions. She's out of control with the weather. She is losing it even a bit in her mind.

It's no spoiler to talk about her sleepwalking, because she did that in season 1. That is still happening, but worse. It’s seeing her come undone in a new way. And I'm curious to see how people will respond to that.

How grueling is it for you and the cast to film Yellowjackets? How did the cast stay grounded?
It's difficult. We were all talking about that before the end of the season. I said something about having nightmares a lot towards the end of the season. It gets really crazy and Sophie Thatcher was like, "Oh my god, I'm having nightmares, too." And then I think Liv said they had them, too. It does take a toll and it's tricky to find the balance, but we saw some movies together. We saw M3GAN, and it would totally be a spoiler to say this thing that happened, but I will later because Samantha made this joke that referred to something that happens in episode eight or nine that is so dark, but it was so funny. 

We just have to cope through humor. We are constantly goofing off on set and making jokes. And then I, personally, this second season just left a lot. We have a lot of time off since it's an ensemble show, it’s kind of one blessing of working with such a large cast, so I would just leave town a lot. I would go to Oakland to see family or go visit my girlfriend, or we'd go to L.A. and see friends, and that helps for sure.

Speaking of staying grounded, I read that your latest music video was a favorite song for you and the cast.
“Night Shift” has been one of my favorite songs for five years, since it came out. And in 2021, when we were shooting season 1, I listened to it all the time. I don't remember how it started, but I put it on or someone put it on, and then Jane [Widdop] was singing with me and then Courtney [Eaton] and pretty soon it became our little anthem. Almost all of the '96 cast, we would just scream that song together to get through some of the long nights. And that was before I became friends with Lucy [Dacus]. And then once I did it's just such a crazy, beautiful, full-circle moment to get to be in that video. I still can't wrap my head around that.

I read that you filmed it in the Poconos. Growing up in the Northeast, there used to be advertisements for that hotel with the wine-glass tub all over the place.
Oh, my god. Yeah! I had a room with one of those. I didn’t have a chance to use it, but those rooms were crazy. There's mirrors on the ceiling, above the heart-shaped bed. There's a wine-glass tub. And then there was a full heart-shaped pool and a sauna in my room. Oh, my god. I want to go back with a lover. That just sounds so fun.

Small Talk 

Who is your Hollywood mentor?
Regina King, because she played my mom in The Leftovers and was the first actress to invite me over for dinner and offered me advice, and take care of me in that way. Actually, I was just talking to Jovan Adepo, who played my twin, who played her son in that show this weekend and was saying, "I haven't seen her in a bit." I'd really like to get together with her, but she made such an impact on me when I was just starting in the industry. And I don't know if I'll be able to really thank her, truly tell her how much that all meant to me.

Is there a pop-culture moment that sparked your interest in Hollywood?
I was always going to be an actor. I've always loved musical theater and I remember my aunt and uncle, for my birthday, got my mom and I both seats to go see the touring production of The Music Man at The Hult Center, which is the place that all the touring shows go in Eugene, Oregon. And there was a little girl in that show playing the piano and singing and I was like, "Oh, I want to do that." And so I think that was the first time I realized I could do it.

But then pop culturally, there was a moment on the Oprah show, I just remember Oprah saying that from a really young age, she decided, "I'm going to get out of here, where I'm from. I'm going to make a new life for myself. I'm going to make a lot of money and I'm going to do important things that change the world." And she's like, "I decided and then I did it." 

And so none of my success has surprised me, basically. And so thanks to Oprah, I just decided it and in a similar sense. I'm honored and I'm grateful every day and I'm not surprised, because Oprah said I could do it, so I am.

Is there a celebrity that you’ve been starstruck to meet so far?
Yes. Carey Mulligan, I love her. Her work in An Education, it was the first film I saw when I was 18 that wasn't a big blockbuster, that just was a quiet, slow, gut punch of a movie. When we're in our late teens, a lot of women at least have had a similar experience to that movie. And I had dated an older man who I shouldn't have, and I thought I was special and I wasn't and blah, blah. And I saw that movie right around that time and I was like, "Oh my god."

I met Carey Mulligan at the Phoenix Choice Awards last year and I couldn't believe it. I don't think I was very cool. I was like, "You're my favorite actress. You're one of the reasons I'm an actress. I love you. Can I take a picture with you?" And I have the picture on my Instagram.

I'm going to find it.
Yeah, she looks beautiful. I was wearing Prada, I was so happy. So, who knows if she even remembers me, but I would love to work with her so much.

Do you have a go-to nail color?
Usually, I don't have polish on. I don't really wear nail polish. But every time I get to walk the carpet, my publicist is like, "Paint your nails, bitch," and so I do.

If you could only watch three movies for the rest of your life, what would they be?
My god. Chicago. I love the movie version of Chicago. Honestly, the new Puss in Boots. It's so good. I cried, I laughed. I feel like I learned a lesson, so that's on there. And what else? How about Love & Basketball? Those are three good movies right there.

Astrology. Yes or no?
Oh, yes.

What's your sign?
OK, here's the thing. I'm literally on the cusp of Aries and Pisces. My birthday is Mar. 21, so some astrology books say that's the last day of Pisces, some say it's the first day of Aries. And it genuinely depends who I'm around. I'm 100% a Pisces with my girlfriend. I'm an Aries with most of my friends. I'm an Aries for sure when I'm in public, doing interviews and doing carpets. But I'm very much a Pisces when I'm at home and by myself. I'm just more quiet and dreamy. But then if we're talking moon and rising, my moon is in Cancer, and my rising is in Scorpio. I think Scorpio rising are sexy. I'm sorry. I'm saying it. 

They are. Say it louder! 
Are you a Scorpio rising?

No, but I have a lot of Scorpios in my life, so I feel the energy very heavily. I also have my Mercury in Scorpio.
OK, sexy! Scorpio sun, too much. Scorpio moon, I don't trust it. But any Scorpio anywhere else? Sexy. That’s how I feel.

Finally, I have to ask.  What is your favorite scary movie?
My favorite scary movie is Get Out. But my favorite scary movie from childhood would be the remake of When a Stranger Calls. I made all my friends watch it at sleepovers. Similar to Scream, actually.

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