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A Nightmare on Elm Street

A Nightmare on Elm Street
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Wes Craven
Produced by Robert Shaye
Written by Wes Craven
Starring
Music by Charles Bernstein
Cinematography Jacques Haitkin
Edited by Patrick McMahon
Rick Shaine
Production
company
Media Home Entertainment
Smart Egg Pictures
Distributed by New Line Cinema
Release dates
  • November 9, 1984 (1984-11-09)
Running time
91 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $1.8 million
Box office $25.5 million[1]

A Nightmare on Elm Street is a 1984 American supernatural slasher horror film written and directed by Wes Craven, and the first film of the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. The film stars Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Amanda Wyss, Jsu Garcia, Robert Englund, and Johnny Depp in his feature film debut. Set in the fictional Midwestern town of Springwood, Ohio, the plot revolves around several teenagers who are stalked and killed in their dreams (and thus killed in reality) by Freddy Krueger. The teenagers are unaware of the cause of this strange phenomenon, but their parents hold a dark secret from long ago.

Craven produced A Nightmare on Elm Street on an estimated budget of just $1.8 million,[2] a sum the film earned back during its first week.[1] An instant commercial success, the film went on to gross over $25 million at the United States box office.[1] A Nightmare on Elm Street was met with rave critical reviews and went on to make a very significant impact on the horror genre, spawning a franchise consisting of a line of sequels, a television series, a crossover with Friday the 13th, beyond various other works of imitation; a remake of the same name was released in 2010.[3][4]

The film is credited with carrying on many tropes found in low-budget horror films of the 1970s and 1980s, originating in John Carpenter's 1978 horror film Halloween, including the morality play that revolves around sexual promiscuity in teenagers resulting in their eventual death, leading to the term "slasher film".[4][5] Critics and film historians argue that the film's premise is the struggle to define the distinction between dreams and reality, manifested by the lives and dreams of the teens in the film.[6] Critics today praise the film's ability to transgress "the boundaries between the imaginary and real",[7] toying with audience perceptions.[8]

Plot

A mysterious man walks into a decrepit boiler room, where he makes a sharp clawed glove.

High school student Tina has a nightmare in which she wanders about in the same boiler room stalked by a killer with a burnt face. She wakes up to find slashes in her nightgown reminiscent of the killer's glove. The next day, Tina's best friend Nancy consoles her, and recalls a nursery rhyme, "One, Two, Freddy's Coming for You". Nancy's boyfriend Glen advises her that it is just a dream, which works for him when he has nightmares. That night, Nancy and Glen stay at Tina's. During their conversation, Tina discovers Nancy dreamed about the same killer. Tina's boyfriend Rod crashes the sleepover in order to apologize for an argument they had earlier. They sleep together while Glen and Nancy sleep in adjacent rooms. Tina falls asleep and is again stalked by the killer, who pins her down in her back yard. Her struggles and screams awaken Rod, who witnesses her being stabbed by an invisible killer, before she is dragged up the wall and across the ceiling. Her screams alert Nancy and Glen who are unable to enter the room. When Tina falls dead onto the bed, Rod flees through a window. At the police station, Nancy is questioned by her father, Lieutenant Don Thompson, and she explains Tina dreamed someone was trying to kill her.

The next day, Rod grabs Nancy on her way to school and proclaims his innocence before he is arrested by Don. At school, Nancy falls asleep during class and follows Tina's bagged body into a boiler room where the killer, who calls himself "Freddy" attempts to kill her until she burns her arm on a hot pipe, and wakes up in class. She discovers a similar burn on her arm, and becomes afraid of falling asleep. She falls asleep in her bathtub and Freddy tries to pull her under water, but Nancy escapes. Hearing from Rod that he has dreamed of the same killer, she suspects he is real and can kill people in their dreams. She has Glen watch her while she sleeps, and sees Freddy going after Rod, but he attacks her instead. She runs back to her room but is unable to wake herself up. When Freddy attacks her again, her alarm goes off and she wakes up. Nancy and Glen go to the police station, but are too late to save Rod, who is hanged in his cell in an apparent suicide, although it was actually an invisible Freddy who wrapped a bed sheet around his neck while he was asleep. After Rod's funeral, Nancy's mother Marge insists on taking Nancy to a dream clinic. While there, she has another nightmare and wakes up with a gash in her arm. She also discovers that she pulled out the killer's hat, which Marge recognizes. Marge begins drinking heavily, and fortifies their house with security bars. When Nancy begs her to tell her what happened, Marge says that she and several parents in the neighborhood sought vigilante justice against a child murderer named Fred Krueger when he was released on a technicality, and they burned him to death.

Nancy, having been awake for seven days, decides to try to pull Freddy into the real world and convinces Glen to be there to knock him out. Glen's parents, concerned about Nancy's influence, prevent the two from meeting. Glen falls asleep and Freddy kills him by pulling him into his bed mattress. While Lt. Thompson is investigating, he receives a call from Nancy who tells him to break into her house in twenty minutes. She sets up booby traps and tucks her drunken mother in for the night. After falling asleep, Freddy does not reveal himself until the last ten seconds of her dream and she tackles him, pulling him into the real world. He chases her around the house, falling into Nancy's traps, and is lit on fire. When Don arrives, they discover Freddy has gone upstairs and is smothering Marge with his burning body. Nancy knocks Freddy out by hitting him with a chair. Don comes into the room and puts out the fire. Freddy disappears, and Marge's body vanishes into the bed. Sending Don away, Nancy follows Glen's advice to turn her back on Freddy. Freddy rises out of Marge's mattress, and she weakens him, calling him nothing and refusing to believe in him; Freddy vanishes before he can attack her. Emerging from her front door in broad daylight, Nancy finds her mother sober and wanting to give up drinking. Glen, Tina and Rod pull up in Glen's car and Nancy gets in to go to school. The car develops a life of its own and traps them. Nancy screams for her mother, but the car drives away with the four. Marge is grabbed through the window of the front door by Freddy and pulled inside.

Cast

The cast of A Nightmare on Elm Street included a crew of veteran actors such as Robert Englund and John Saxon, as well as several aspiring young actors including Johnny Depp and Heather Langenkamp.

The task of creating Krueger's disfigured face fell to makeup man David Miller, who based his creation on photographs of burn victims he obtained from the UCLA Medical Center.[9]

Production

Development

A Nightmare on Elm Street contains many biographical elements, taking inspiration from director Wes Craven's childhood.[11] The basis of the film was inspired by several newspaper articles printed in the LA Times in the 1970s on a group of Khmer refugees, who, after fleeing to the United States from the results of American bombing in Cambodia, were suffering disturbing nightmares, after which they refused to sleep. Some of the men died in their sleep soon after. Medical authorities called the phenomenon Asian Death Syndrome. The condition itself afflicted only men between the ages of 19 and 57 and is believed to be sudden unexplained death syndrome or Brugada syndrome, or both.[12] The 1970s pop song "Dream Weaver" by Gary Wright sealed the story for Craven, giving him not only an artistic setting to "jump off" from, but a synthesizer riff from the Elm Street soundtrack as well.[13] Craven has also stated that he drew some inspiration for the film from Eastern religions.[14]

Other sources also attribute the inspiration for the film to be a 1968 student film project made by students of Craven's at Clarkson University. The student film parodied contemporary horror films, and was filmed along Elm Street in Potsdam, New York[15][16] (the town in the film was named Madstop—Potsdam spelled backwards).[17]

The film's villain, Freddy Krueger, draws heavily from Craven's early life. One night, a young Craven saw an elderly man walking on the sidepath outside the window of his home. The man stopped to glance at a startled Craven, and then walked off. This served as the inspiration for Krueger.[11] Initially, Fred Krueger was intended to be a child molester, but Craven eventually decided to characterize him as a child murderer to avoid being accused of exploiting a spate of highly publicized child molestation cases that occurred in California around the time of production of the film.[9]

By Craven's account, his own adolescent experiences led to the naming of Freddy Krueger. He had been bullied at school by a child named Fred Krueger, and named his villain accordingly.[9] In addition, Craven had done the same in his earlier film The Last House on the Left (1972), where the villain's name was shortened to "Krug". The colored sweater he chose for his villain was based on the DC Comics character Plastic Man, and Craven chose to make Krueger's sweater red and green, after reading an article in Scientific American in 1982 that said the two most clashing colors to the human retina were this particular combination.[10]

Craven strove to make Krueger different from other horror-film villains of the era. "A lot of the killers were wearing masks: Leatherface, Michael Myers, Jason," he recalled in 2014. "I wanted my villain to have a 'mask,' but be able to talk and taunt and threaten. So I thought of him being burned and scarred." He also felt the killer should use something other than a knife, which was too common. "So I thought, How about a glove with steak knives? I gave the idea to our special-effects guy, Jim Doyle." Ultimately two models of the glove were built: one called the "hero glove" used only whenever anything needs to be cut, and the other a stunt glove less likely to cause injury.[18]

Writing

Wes Craven began writing A Nightmare on Elm Street's screenplay around 1981, after he had finished production on Swamp Thing (1982). He pitched it to several studios, but each one of them rejected it for different reasons. The first studio to show interest was Walt Disney Productions, although they wanted Craven to tone down the content to make it suitable for children and pre-teens. Craven declined.[9][10] Another early suitor was Paramount Pictures; however the studios passed on the project due to Nightmare on Elm Street's similarity to Dreamscape (1984), a film they were producing at the time. Universal Studios also passed; Craven, who was in desperate personal and financial straits during this period, later framed their rejection letter on the wall of his office.[18]

Finally, the fledgling and independent New Line Cinema corporation—which had up to that point only distributed films, rather than making its own—gave the project the go-ahead.[9] During filming, New Line's distribution deal for the film fell through and for two weeks it was unable to pay its cast and crew. Although New Line has gone on to make much bigger and more profitable films, Nightmare holds such an important place in the company's history that the studio is often referred to as "The House That Freddy Built".[19] In fact, much of the successful application filed by producer Robert Shaye for a public offering of New Line's stock centered around the Nightmare franchise, because it provided a Hollywood rarity of large profits that could also be regularly counted on by the company.

Casting

Actor David Warner was originally slated to play Freddy.[20] Make-up tests were done,[21] but he had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts. Replacing him was difficult at first. "I couldn’t find an actor to play Freddy Krueger with the sense of ferocity I was seeking," Craven recalled on the film's 30th anniversary. "Everyone was too quiet, too compassionate towards children. Then Robert Englund auditioned. [He] wasn’t as tall I’d hoped, and he had baby fat on his face, but he impressed me with his willingness to go to the dark places in his mind. Robert understood Freddy."[18]

To get that understanding, Englund had darkened his lower eyelids with cigarette ash on his way to the audition and slicked his hair back. "I looked strange. I sat there and listened to Wes talk. He was tall and preppy and erudite. I posed a bit, like Klaus Kinski, and that was the audition," he said later. He took the part because it was the only project that fit his schedule during the hiatus between the V miniseries and series.[18]

Craven claimed he wanted someone very "non-Hollywood" for the role of Nancy, and he believed Langenkamp met this quality.[11] Langenkamp, before becoming an actress, worked as a newspaper copy girl, and saw an advertisement for extras needed on The Outsiders earlier that year, which was being shot in Tulsa. She did not get the part, but it encouraged her to take time off from her studies at Stanford and continue acting.[18] Eventually she landed the role of Nancy Thompson after an open audition, beating out more than 200 actresses including Demi Moore, Courteney Cox, Tracey Gold and Jennifer Grey.[22] Langenkamp returned as Nancy in A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987), and also played herself in Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994).

Johnny Depp was another unknown when he was cast; and initially went to accompany a friend (Jackie Earle Haley, who went on to play Freddy in the 2010 remake) so he could audition, yet eventually got the part of Glen.[11] Glen Lantz's epic death in this movie is paid homage to by a flashback in Freddy vs. Jason and Depp gets his own nod in a cameo role in Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare as a guy on TV.[23] Craven's daughters picked Depp's headshot from the set he showed them.[18] Other actors such as Charlie Sheen (who wanted too much money[18]), John Cusack, Brad Pitt, Kiefer Sutherland, Nicolas Cage and C. Thomas Howell were considered.

Filming

According to Shaye, all the film's original investors backed out at one point or another during pre-production. The original budget was merely $700,000. "It ended up at $1.1 million ... Half the funding came from a Yugoslavian guy who had a girlfriend he wanted in movies."[18]

Principal photography began in June 1984 and wrapped in July. The fictional address of the house that appears in the film is 1428 Elm Street in Springwood, Ohio. The actual house is a private home located in Los Angeles, California on 1428 North Genesee Avenue.[24] During production, over 500 gallons of fake blood were used for the special effects production.[25] For the famous blood geyser sequence, the filmmakers used the same revolving room set that was used for Tina's death. They put the set so that it was upside down and attached the camera so that it looked like the room was right side up, then they poured gallons of red water into the room, because the normal film blood would not make the right effect for the geyser. During the filming of this scene, the blood poured in an unexpected way causing the rotating room to spin. Much of the blood spilled out of the bedroom window covering Craven and Langenkamp.[26] The scene where Nancy is attacked by Krueger in her bathtub was accomplished with a special bottomless tub. The tub was put in a bathroom set that was built over a swimming pool. During the underwater sequence Heather Langenkamp was replaced with a stuntwoman. The "melting staircase" as seen in Nancy's dream was Robert Shaye's idea; it was created using pancake mix.[26]

Jsu Garcia, who was credited as Rod under the name "Nick Corri", says the production was difficult for him. He had recently come off a period of homelessness, and was still dealing with the depression from that by snorting heroin in the bathroom between takes. In 2014, he revealed that he was high on that drug during the scene between him and Langenkamp in his jail cell. "His eyes were watery and they weren’t focused," Langenkamp said. "I thought, Wow, he’s giving the best performance of his life."[18]

Wes Craven originally planned for the film to have a more evocative ending: Nancy kills Krueger by ceasing to believe in him, then awakes to discover that everything that happened in the film was an elongated nightmare. However, New Line leader Robert Shaye demanded a twist ending, in which Krueger disappears and the film all appears to have been a dream, only for the audience to discover that they are watching a dream-within-a-dream-within-a-dream, where Fred reappears as a car that "kidnaps" Nancy and her friends, followed by Fred reaching through a window on the front door to pull Nancy's mother inside.[26] Both a happy ending and a twist ending were filmed, but the final film used the twist ending. As a result, Craven (who never wanted the film to be an ongoing franchise), dropped out of working on the first sequel, Freddy's Revenge (1985).[26] Production wrapped in July, and was rushed to get it ready for its November release.

Themes

Coming of Age

Freddy exclusively attacks teenagers and his actions have been interpreted as symbolic of the often traumatic experiences of adolescence.[27] Nancy, like the archetypal teenager, experiences social anxiety and her relationships with her parents become very strained. Sexuality is present in Freudian images and is almost exclusively displayed in a threatening and mysterious context (e.g., Tina's death visually evokes a rape, Freddy's glove between Nancy's legs in the bath). The original script actually called for Krueger to be a child molester, rather than a child killer, before being murdered.[28]

"In Nightmare, all the adults are damaged: They're alcoholic, they're on pills, they're not around," Englund has observed. Blakely says the parents in the film "verge on being villains." Englund adds that "[t]he adolescents have to wade through that, and Heather is the last girl standing. She lives. She defeats Freddy." Langenkamp agrees. "Nightmare is a feminist movie, but I look at it more as a 'youth power' film."[18]

Distribution

Home media

The film was first introduced to the home video market by Media Home Entertainment in early 1985 and was eventually released on Laserdisc. It has since been released on DVD, first in 1999 in the United States as part of the Nightmare on Elm Street Collection box set (along with the other six sequels), and once again in Restored "Infinifilm" Special Edition in 2006, containing various special features with contributions from Wes Craven, Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon and the director of photography.

The Special Edition consisted of 2 DVDs, one with the film picture and sound restored (DTS 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1 and original mono audio track) and another DVD with special features. Along with the restored version of the film, DVD 1 also had 2 commentaries, other nightmares (if not all) from the film's sequels (2–7 & Freddy Vs. Jason). It also included additional, extended or alternate scenes of the film, such as one scene where Marge reveals to Nancy that she had another sibling that was killed by Freddy. These unused clips/scenes were not included/added in the film but could be viewed separately from the DVD's Menus.

On April 13, 2010, the film was released on Blu-ray Disc by Warner Home Video,[29] with all the same extras from the 2006 Special Edition included on the Blu-ray release.[30] A new DVD box set containing all of the films up to that point was released on the same day.[31]

Reception

Box office

A Nightmare on Elm Street premiered in the United States with a limited theatrical release on November 9, 1984, opening in 165 cinemas across the country.[1] Grossing $1,271,000 during its opening weekend, the film was considered an instant commercial success. The film eventually earned a total of $25,504,513 at the American box office.[1] Additionally, A Nightmare on Elm Street was released in Europe, Canada and Australia.[32]

Critical reception

Since its initial release, the film has received universal critical acclaim. Critics have praised the film's ability to rupture "the boundaries between the imaginary and real,"[33] toying with audience perceptions.[8] Some film historians interpreted this overriding theme as a social subtext, "the struggles of adolescents in American society".[34] Variety said the film was "A highly imaginative horror film that provides the requisite shocks to keep fans of the genre happy".[35]

The film has a 94% approval rating based on 47 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes[36] and is widely considered one of the best films of 1984.[37][38][39] It ranked at #17 on Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments (2004), a five-hour program that selected cinema's scariest moments. In 2003, Freddy Krueger was named the 40th greatest film villain on American Film Institute's 100 Years... 100 Heroes and Villains.[40] In 2008, Empire ranked A Nightmare on Elm Street 162nd on their list of The 500 Greatest Movies of All Time.[41] It also was selected by The New York Times as one of The Best 1000 Movies Ever Made.[42]

American Film Institute recognition

Accolades

  • Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films – Best Horror Film (1985) (Nomination)
  • Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films – Best Performance by a Young Actor – Jsu Garcia (Nomination)
  • Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films – Best DVD Classic Film Release (2007) (Nomination)
  • Avoriaz Fantastic Film Festival – Critic Award 1985 – Wes Craven (won)
  • Avoriaz Fantastic Film Festival – Special Mention for Acting 1985 – Heather Langenkamp (Won)

Remakes

In 2010, a remake was released, also titled A Nightmare on Elm Street, starring Jackie Earle Haley as Freddy Krueger. The film was produced by Michael Bay, and directed by Samuel Bayer and written by the team of Wesley Strick and Eric Heisserer. The film is also a reboot to the franchise.

On August 7, 2015, it was reported that New Line Cinema are developing a remake with Orphan writer David Leslie Johnson.[45]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e A Nightmare on Elm Street at Box Office Mojo; last accessed June 1, 2014.
  2. ^ John Kenneth Muir, "Career Overview" in Wes Craven: The Art of Horror (Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland and Company, 1998), p. 18, ISBN 0-7864-1923-7.
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b Jim Harper, Legacy of Blood: A Comprehensive Guide to Slasher Movies (Manchester, Eng.: Headpress, 2004), p. 126, ISBN 1-900486-39-3.
  5. ^ Rick Worland, The Horror Film: A Brief Introduction (Malden, Mass.: Blackwell Publishing, 2007), p. 106, ISBN 1-4051-3902-1.
  6. ^ Kelly Bulkeley, Visions of the Night: Dreams, Religion, and Psychology (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1999), p. 108; see also chap. 11: "Dreamily Deconstructing the Dream Factory: The Wizard of Oz and Nightmare on Elm Street," ISBN 0-7914-4283-7.
  7. ^ Ian Conrich, "Seducing the Subject: Fred Krueger, Popular Culture and the Nightmare on Elm Street Films" in Trash Aesthetics: Popular Culture and its Audience, ed. Deborah Cartmell, I. Q. Hunter, Heldi Kaye and Imelda Whelehan (London: Pluto Press, 2004), p. 119, ISBN 0-7453-1202-0.
  8. ^ a b James Berardinelli, review of A Nightmare on Elm Street, at ReelViews; last accessed August 30, 2006.
  9. ^ a b c d e Rockoff, Adam, Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film, 1978–1986 (McFarland & Company, 2002), p. 151, ISBN 0-7864-1227-5.
  10. ^ a b c
  11. ^ a b c d DVD (2001, New Line Cinema Entertainment)A Nightmare on Elm Street.
  12. ^ CDCR Alert at Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; accessed September 13, 2009.
  13. ^ Wes Craven. A Nightmare on Elm Street DVD audio commentary.
  14. ^ Wes Craven interview at Twitch Film; accessed November 23, 2007.
  15. ^
  16. ^ Nightmare on Elm Street at Potsdam; accessed November 2, 2007.
  17. ^
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i j
  19. ^ A Nightmare on Elm Street at DVD Revire; accessed November 2, 2007.
  20. ^ Blu-ray (2010, IMAGE ENTERTAINMENT)Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy.
  21. ^ http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_D1ZZyTOG7tQ/S91QIWXa4dI/AAAAAAAAGxM/GkqmlxAexRo/s1600/David+Warner+as+Freddy+Krueger.jpg
  22. ^ Heather Langenkamp interview at The Arrow; last accessed November 23, 2007.
  23. ^
  24. ^ Site with a picture of the house; Site with the actual address and floor plan and indoor photos
  25. ^ "Frightful Facts" at House of Horrors; last accessed November 22, 207.
  26. ^ a b c d Never Sleep Again: The Making of A Nightmare on Elm Street, documentary on the Special Edition 2006 DVD of A Nightmare on Elm Street (2006, New Line Cinema Entertainment), B000GETUDI.
  27. ^ Not Coming to a Theater Near You review of A Nightmare on Elm Street by Leo Goldsmith [1]
  28. ^
  29. ^
  30. ^
  31. ^
  32. ^ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0087800/releaseinfo?ref_=tt_ov_inf+
  33. ^ Ian Conrich, "Seducing the Subject: Freddy Krueger, Popular Culture and the Nightmare on Elm Street Films" in Trash Aesthetics: Popular Culture and its Audience, ed. Deborah Cartmell, I. Q. Hunter, Heldi Kaye and Imelda Whelehan (London: Pluto Press, 2004), p. 119, ISBN 0-7453-1202-0.
  34. ^ Kelly Bulkeley, Visions of the Night: Dreams, Religion, and Psychology (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1999), p. 108; see also chap. 11: "Dreamily Deconstructing the Dream Factory: The Wizard of Oz and A Nightmare on Elm Street," ISBN 0-7914-4283-7.
  35. ^ A Nightmare on Elm Street review at Variety; accessed December 15, 2007.
  36. ^
  37. ^
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^
  42. ^
  43. ^
  44. ^
  45. ^

Further reading

  • Badley, Linda. Film, Horror, and the Body Fantastic. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1995. ISBN 0-313-27523-8.
  • Baird, Robert. "The Startle Effect: Implications for Spectator Cognition and Media Theory." Film Quarterly 53 (No. 3, Spring 2000): pp. 12 – 24.
  • Carroll, Noël. "The Nature of Horror." Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 46 (No. 1, Autumn 1987): pp. 51 – 59.
  • Cumbow, Robert C. Order in the Universe: The Films of John Carpenter. 2nd ed., Lanham, Md.: Scarcrow Press, 2000. ISBN 0-8108-3719-6.
  • Johnson, Kenneth. "The Point of View of the Wandering Camera." Cinema Journal 32 (No. 2, Winter 1993): pp. 49 – 56.
  • King, Stephen. Danse Macabre. New York: Berkley Books, 1981. ISBN 0-425-10433-8.
  • Prince, Stephen, ed. The Horror Film. New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 2004. ISBN 0-8135-3363-5.
  • Schneider, Steven Jay, ed. Horror Film and Psychoanalysis: Freud's Worst Nightmare. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004. ISBN 0-521-82521-0.
  • Williams, Tony. Hearths of Darkness: The Family in the American Horror Film. Rutherford, N.J.: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1996. ISBN 0-8386-3564-4.

External links

A Nightmare on Elm Street

A Nightmare on Elm Street

1, 2, Freddy's coming for you... 3, 4, better lock your door... 5, 6, grab your crucifix... 7, 8, gonna stay up late... 9, 10, never sleep again...

A Nightmare on Elm Street Portal


The WorldHeritage logo for A Nightmare on Elm Street
A Nightmare on Elm Street is an American horror franchise that consists of nine slasher films, a television show, novels, and comic books. The franchise began with the film series, which was created by Wes Craven, with various other individuals taking over those jobs for each film sequel. The franchise is based on the fictional character of Freddy Krueger, introduced in A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), who stalks and kills teenagers in their dreams; if Freddy kills the teenager in the dream world then they are ultimately killed in the real world. His motives were to seek revenge on their parents, who had burned him alive years before the events of the first Nightmare film. The original film was written and directed by Craven, who returned to co-script the second sequel, A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987), and to write and direct New Nightmare (1994). The original film was released in 1984, and following it a series of sequels was produced by the independent film company New Line Cinema. New Line often attributes the growth of their company to the success of the Nightmare franchise. The film series as a whole has received mixed reviews by critics, but has been a financial success at the box office. When comparing the United States box office grosses of other American horror film series, A Nightmare on Elm Street is the third highest grossing franchise in adjusted US dollars. In 1988, a television series was produced with Freddy as the host. The pilot episode focused on the night Freddy was burned alive by the angry parents of the children he had killed, though the rest of the series featured episodes with independent plots. Twelve novels, separate from the adaptations of the films, and multiple comic book series were published featuring Freddy Krueger.



Selected film


Wes Craven's New Nightmare is a 1994 horror-fantasy metafilm written and directed by Wes Craven. Although the seventh installment in the Nightmare on Elm Street series, New Nightmare is not part of the series continuity, instead taking place in a pseudoistic real life setting where Freddy Krueger is an iconic movie villain. The plot focuses on Freddy invading the real world and haunting the actors and crew responsible for the Nightmare on Elm Street films.

The film features various people involved in the motion picture industry playing themselves, including actress Heather Langenkamp who also reprises her role as Nancy Thompson. New Nightmare features several homages to the original film.

Written under the working title of A Nightmare on Elm Street 7: The Ascension, Wes Craven set out to make a deliberately more cerebral film than recent entries to the franchise - which he regarded as cartoonish and not faithful to his original themes. The basic premise of this film originated when Craven first signed on to co-write A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, but New Line Cinema rejected it then.


Selected actor


Robert Barton Englund (born June 6, 1947) is an American actor, best known for playing the fictional serial killer Freddy Krueger, in the Nightmare on Elm Street film series. He received a Saturn Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor for A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors in 1987 and A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master in 1988. Despite his reputation for appearing in exploitative horror films, Englund is a classically trained actor.

Englund was born in Glendale, California on June 6th 1947, the son of Janis (née McDonald) and C. Kent Englund, an aeronautics engineer who helped develop the Lockheed U-2 aircraft. He has Swedish ancestry. Englund began studying acting at the age of twelve. He attended California State University Northridge for three years before transferring to Michigan's Oakland University, where he trained at the Meadow Brook Theatre, at the time a branch of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Englund has been married three times and has one daughter. He currently resides in Laguna Beach, California.


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Freddy Krueger is a fictional supernatural serial killer from the A Nightmare on Elm Street series of films. He is the only character to have appeared in every film in the series. Created by Wes Craven and portrayed by actor Robert Englund in eight films and a TV series between 1984 and 2003, he is an undead serial killer, who can attack his victims from within their own dreams. Freddy is commonly identified by his burned, disfigured face, red and dark green striped sweater, brown fedora hat, and trademark metal-clawed brown leather glove. Wizard magazine rated him the 14th greatest villain, the British television channel Sky2 listed him 8th, and the American Film Institute ranked him 40th on its "AFI's 100 Years... 100 Heroes and Villains" list. Wes Craven claims his inspiration for the basis of Krueger's power stemmed from several stories in the Los Angeles Times about a series of mysterious deaths: All the victims had reported recurring nightmares beforehand, and died in their sleep. Other than that, Craven's inspirations for Freddy included a homeless man who had frightened Craven as a youth and a bully at his school. The 1970s pop song "Dream Weaver" by Gary Wright sealed the story for Craven, giving him not only a creative springboard, but the synthesizer riff from the Elm Street soundtrack.


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Robert Englund, portrayer of Freddy Krueger in the first eight films in 2005.


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A Nightmare on Elm Street



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Robert Englund on the cast for the 2010 remake of the original

[...] I'm a big fan of Clancy Brown's, [...] I've been a big fan of Clancy's since Highlander. I love Connie Britton on Friday Night Lights. [..] If she's playing Marge, she's perfect as that alcoholic mom. [...] I love the boy from Sarah Connor Chronicles (Thomas Dekker). I think he's a really interesting choice. So in terms of those characters I'm really pleased. I don't know the director (Samuel Bayer)'s work, but my feeling is that Michael Bay [...] would not put his name on this if he didn't have some real love for the franchise. [...]

Cast


Cast members


Shon GreenblattBradley GreggClu GulagerDanny HasselIra HeidenMiko HughesKatharine IsabelleAndras JonesMonica KeenaPaul KentTuesday KnightRob LaBelleKyle LabineClayton LandeyHope LangeHeather LangenkampEvangeline LillyRicky Dean LoganChris MarquetteNan MartinTom McFaddenNicholas MeleBreckin MeyerTracy MiddendorfKelly Jo MinterLochlyn MunroKim MyersToy NewkirkDavid NewsomMarne PattersonMark PattonPriscilla PointerLinnea QuigleyJason RitterKelly RowlandJennifer RubinRobert RuslerKen SagoesRudy SarzoJohn SaxonJoe SeelyTobe SextonLin ShayeEric SingerMichael Bailey SmithPenelope SudrowBrooke TheissJay ThomasJoe UngerLyman WardCraig WassonJoseph WhippLisa WilcoxMatt WinstonAmanda WyssLisa Zane

Characters


Alexandra Marie CoyleAlicia NorrisAlice JohnsonAmanda KruegerChip ParkerDan JordanDeanJason VoorheesJennifer CaulfieldJerome StarkeyJesse WalshJoey CruselJulieKristen ParkerKeithLori CampbellMaggie BurroughsMarge ThompsonMark GreyNeil GordonRick JohnsonRod LaneRoland KincaidSheila KopeckyTaryn WhiteTina GreyWill RollinsWill Stanton


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Associated Wikimedia


A Nightmare on Elm Street on Wikiquote
Quotations

A Nightmare on Elm Street • Freddy's revenge • Dream Warriors • Dream Master • Freddy's dead • New Nightmare • Freddy vs. Jason



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