When looking across the pantheon of cinema, one genre that hangs on its finale more than most is the horror movie.
Sure, any film in any genre can be taken to new heights - or new lows - by its ending, but that's something that's even more prevalent in horror. So many potentially great horrors have been soured by lame conclusions, and likewise so many average pictures have been taken to another level by a great final act.
Given how this genre as a whole is one laced with surprise plot twists and turns, it's understandable why these reveals have so much resting on them. And in that regard, it's also understandable why horror offerings tend to undergo more rewrites and plot changes than any other genre.
Throughout the decades, many a horror movie script has started off with one endgame in mind, only to have numerous changes take place by the time the film finally makes it to the silver screen. In particular, a movie has set out with one main villain or killer in mind, only to change those original plans by the time all is said and done.
Here, then, are eight such horror movies where the 'big bad' of the piece was originally intended to be someone totally different to who we ultimately got.
8. Scream 3 - Stu Macher
Matthew Lillard's Stu Macher was famously one of the 'big reveal' killers of the first Scream movie.
Not only did Wes Craven's 1996 offering completely reinvent the slasher subgenre, it also caught many a horror hound off guard with its reveal of two killers being behind the Ghostface persona. But for Stu, Scream wasn't meant to the last that we saw of his character.
As detailed by Lillard several times in recent years - such as on the Bob Bendick podcast - there was a plan in place for his character to be orchestrating the atrocities at play in Scream 3. While the final sight of Stu was of him having a TV dropped on his head at Scream's close, we technically never had any confirmation of his death.
Scream 3 was originally to feature a slew of high school murders, with Stu revealed as the mastermind behind these demises. Once the very real, very tragic events of the shootings at Columbine happened in April 1999, the third Scream picture was rewritten - and part of those rewrites saw Stu Macher removed from the film.
Instead, the threequel revolved around Hollywood and the revelation that Sidney Prescott had a half-brother who her mother had abandoned as soon as he was born.