Freddy Krueger Secrets: Little Known Facts and Info

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Scary Movies and Series

Nightmare on Elm Street’s Freddy Krueger

Freddy Krueger, originally “Frederick Charles Krueger,” is Elm street’s serial child killer starring throughout the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. Most notably played by Robert Englund (from 1984 through 2003), the character prey son the children of Elm street through their sleep in the dreamworld.  Freddy Krueger is traditionally powerless in the real world, and thus one of the most successful ways of ‘killing’ him, were to bring him into the real world by gripping onto him while being woken up from the dreamworld. Wes Craven’s Freddy Krueger is one of the most notorious fictional serial killers to grace the screen of horror…and one of the oldest, being a product of the 80s!

Fun Facts About Nightmare’s Freddy Krueger

Although there are seemingly infinite Freddy Krueger fun facts and trivia, some stand out as particularly interesting. Check out some of these unbelievable tidbits about one of our favorite horror slashers!

Freddy Krueger Fact #1: Casting the Perfect Freddy Krueger

Finding Freddy Krueger wouldn’t be easy, and although probably dozens or more actors would be considered, Robert Englund would be selected.  Robert has explained that he went through some pretty gross last minute efforts before entering the building to talk to Wes, including running oil from his car’s dipstick through his hair, and cigarette ash under his eyes. I would say “WTF,” however, seriously…WHO’S LAUGHING NOW ?!

Freddy Krueger Fact #2: A Personality that Grew With Attention

Originally, Freddy Krueger was designed to be scary in many ways, however, his clever phrases made famous in later films wasn’t one of them.  Wes Craven did not draw power from fearful dialog, however, a scary setting, a scary claw, a scary figure…and ultimately a scary dream. A dream you could not control. Your dream, taken over by a serial child killer. However, as Freddy Krueger’s Nightmare on Elm Street films grew with popularity, Freddy’s personality began to blossom and bask in glory! Freddy became more creative, cunning and clever with his dialogue than ever before, going on to star in many more films, all filled with a variety of memorable lingo.

Freddy Krueger portrait with knife hands

Freddy Krueger Fact #3: The Boiler Room

The boiler room used for scenes throughout A Nightmare on Elm Street was actually the Lincoln Heights Jail of the Lincoln Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles, California.  The scenes not only look super realistic and super scary, but the actual jail were closed at the time…being condemned and supposedly haunted in itself! Maybe if we replay the original flick enough, we’ll see a ghost or two from beyond the dreamworld!

Freddy Krueger Fact #4: The Transformation

A lot of Freddy Krueger and Nightmare on Elm Street fans alike ask “How long does the Freddy Krueger makeup take to put on?” Robert Englund answered this directly on his website himself stating that he would be sitting in a chair for 3-4 hours each day receiving his Freddy transformation.  He describes it as a “jigsaw puzzle of twelve or more pieces of pre-painted foam latex” which would be glued to his face and then blended together. Once I was Freddy Krueger for Halloween (age 10), and it took my mother about half that long to apply the goop-based makeup kit the franchise commercialized!

https://www.robertenglund.com/about-robert/

Freddy Krueger Fact #5: An Evil Beginning

Even the most enthusiastic Freddy Krueger and Nightmare on Elm Street fan would easily miss the birth of Freddy Krueger, which was revealed in Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors. Unfortunately Freddy Krueger’s mother, Amanda Krueger (the nun in the film from Westin Hills mental hospital) became pregnant after being raped by a gang of a hundred inmates. This was probably used as a way to create sympathy for the killer due to his increasing popularity.

Freddy Krueger Fact #6: A Child Murderer

Originally, Freddy Krueger was slated to be a child molester, as Wes Craven believed it was the epitome of evil; However, an outbreak of publicized, high-attention child molestation and abuse cases at the time posed a potential liability. Wes and others feared that it could have been misconstrued as a way of exploiting these cases, and ultimately decided to make Freddy Krueger a child murderer instead.

Freddy Krueger Fact #7: A Child Molester

Oddly enough, if enough time has passed, society must heal from anything…as the 2010 remake of Nightmare on Elm Street decides to portray Freddy Krueger as the child molester he was originally intended to be! Poor Jackie Earle Haley (we liked your performance as well though, and it’s not your fault society is jaded!).

Freddy Krueger Fact #8: Dreamweaver

A popular hit song called “Dreamweaver” emerged in the 1970s featuring the mind’s ability to weave dreams. Wes Craven has been quoted giving credit to Dreamweaver’s keyboard intro and exit (outro) being partly responsible for the Nightmare on Elm Street theme and ultimately Freddy Krueger’s most valuable strength: his ability to control dreams.

Freddy Krueger Painting

Freddy Krueger Fact #9: A tattered sweater

Wes Craven has explained in a number of interviews and other excerpts that Freddy Krueger were also inspired by a school age bully.  This bully being an older man who haunted Wes one day on his way home…a homeless, disfigured man who wore a tattered green and red striped sweater. The man actually followed Wes all the way home, and up into the stairwell of his apartment building where his older brother lay waiting with a baseball bat to defend.  Only when Wes and his brother entered the stairwell, the Freddy-like character were no where to be found.

Freddy Krueger Fact #10: Elm Street, only a movie name

Wes Craven recently revealed that the street name “Elm Street” was never spoken out loud during the original Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). This may come to some surprise to even the most hardcore Nightmare fans, as many of us know the words “Elm Street” are most certainly repeated throughout other Nightmare franchise films…almost incessantly.

Final Words

Freddy Krueger is one of the most creative horror killers available. With the franchise having no real anticipated “true end” (they have attempted to end the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise SEVERAL times with no success), Freddy Krueger is likely to amaze and impress us for years to come. As best said by Freddy himself… “This…Is God!”

Is Freddy Krueger Immortal? [Nightmare on Elm Street Trivia]

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Lifestyle Scary Movies and Series

Does Freddy Krueger Live Forever?

Freddy Krueger is an intimidating, nightmare-intruding horror movie killer! Being one of the only “reality manipulating” slashers, he holds a lot more power than the traditional horror movie slasher.  In almost every Nightmare on Elm Street movie, they try to kill Freddy Krueger for good…but Freddy always seems to come back!  Freddy’s repeated return to the big screen leaves Elm Street fans everywhere wondering…

Is Freddy Krueger Actually Immortal? Is there any way to kill Freddy Krueger for good? What are the most effective strategies to survive a Nightmare on Elm Street movie?

Ways Freddy Krueger Has Died (or Been “Killed”)

Freddy Krueger is an intrusive, finger-knived slasher who just keeps coming back.  Still, here are some of the ways his victims have tried to take him out…

Death From Being Forgotten

When an entire town disbelieves in Freddy Krueger or otherwise “forgets” him, he is unable to kill.  Freddy Krueger gets his power from the fear his victims feel and think after hearing horror stories about the finger-bladed slasher.

Drag Him Out of the Dreamworld

The Nightmare on Elm Street killer thrives in the dream world, where his power truly vibrates.  With that said, many victims have discovered that Freddy Krueger can be pulled out of the dreamworld and into reality, where he is much weaker. And while he is still a very agile fighter in the real world and quite dangerous…at least the victims stand a better chance!

Killed by Fire

Although Freddy’s “real life” demise came from being burned alive while trapped in the boiler room…he was also burned alive, after being dragged into the real world at the end of the first movie.

Hypnocil

Hypnocil is one of Freddy’s indirect weaknesses. The fictional “Elm Street” prescription eliminates dreams, effectively eliminating Freddy Krueger’s back door entrance to slaughtering endless Elm Street victims.

Holy Blessings

Freddy Krueger is pure evil, and thus hates all things “church.”  When anointed correctly with holy water or otherwise blessed, Freddy Krueger cannot sustain power.  The catch? His bones have to be blessed and they are buried in a super creepy automobile graveyard.  Bring a cross.

Steal His Power

In one movie, a heroine successfully ‘steals’ the power from some of her fallen friends.  Before Freddy knows what hit him, she beats his butt, sending him away for a long time.  The down side, is that only some people seem to have the power to absorb skills and abilities from their dead friends.

Distraction

Krueger is a softie for attention. In fact, he absolutely loves the limelight! So any opportunity for attention usually takes priority for the glove-wielding slasher.  Victims have used his vanity and attention-loving weakness as a way to escape him or otherwise take him out.  One time, he was even beheaded after being distracted.

Trapped Souls

Freddy’s power gets greater as he absorbs the souls of his victims, trapping them in his evil forever. However, sometimes it is possible to find ‘cracks’ in Freddy’s spirit, freeing the trapped souls enough for them to fight back.  When the souls fight back, they fight back hard, typically dragging Freddy back to hell.

Freddy Always Comes Back

Painting of the Nightmare on Elm street house

The Nightmare on Elm Street slasher is one tough killer. No matter how they try to take Freddy out, he always comes back.  Freddy is even seen winking, taunting the audience in 2003 as Jason carries his head out of the water. Part of the problem people do not realize when trying to kill him, is that he is pure evil himself. Bottom line: Freddy Krueger is immortal, despite being able to die in the real world.

Nightmare on Elm Street Cameos

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Lifestyle Scary Movies and Series

Who Cameos in the Nightmare on Elm Street Movies?

Nightmare on Elm Street Cameo Appearances By Celebrities 

The Nightmare on Elm Street movies have largely been well funded and filled with talented cast and crew members. Due to the great number of people involved on the project and the many number of sequels, the Nightmare movies are more likely to include cameos than many other films.  The creators of the Nightmare movies have been very careful in how they implement cameos…but they are still found throughout the franchise. Maybe they should have called them Screameos instead? What would Elm Street be without screams and famous actors?

List of Nightmare on Elm Street Cameos

Horror Enthusiast has set on a mission to list all of the cameos in the Freddy Krueger movies. Many famous actors have appeared in horror movies before their careers started. Here is the full list as it stands today for Nightmare on Elm Street.

Robert Shaye

Newline Cinema owner and Nightmare on Elm Street original producer, Robert Shaye lends a voice twice in the film. The audio clip of the news reporting Tina’s death and the voice of the station announcer both belong to Shaye.

Shaye plays an actual character in the second film (which he also produced).  Shaye can be seen as the S&M bartender serving Jesse in the gay bar.

Shaye works his way into a cameo during the fourth film in the franchise A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988) as one of the high school teachers.

Freddy’s Dead, the 6th installment in the franchise, features a Robert Shaye ticket booth operator.  He is responsible for selling bus tickets in cameo!

Shaye cameos as himself in Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (like some of the actual actors from the original film).

Again, Shaye makes his way into another film in Freddy vs Jason (2003), playing Laurie’s high school principal.

Robert Shaye’s Sister

The producer’s sister found herself a cameo in the original Nightmare movie (1984) as a teacher…and again in Wes Craven’s New Nightmare as a nurse.

Johnny Depp

One of the stars of the original Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), Johnny Depp, can be seen in a picture within Kristen’s magazine in the fourth film, A Nightmare on Elm Street4: The Dream Master (1988).  He also has a short cameo appearance in Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991).

Renny Harlin

The director of the fourth film in the franchise, A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988), Renny Harlin, cameo’d as a student in a classroom.

Eric Singer

Famous drummer for a number of bands, including Kiss, Black Sabbath, Alice Cooper and Badlands makes a cameo in A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989) as a band member shown on TV.

Alice Cooper

In Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991), Alice Cooper makes a cameo appearance as the abusive father.

Tom Arnold and Roseanne Barr

These two celebrities can be seen playing the childless couple found about 23 minutes into the 6th movie in the franchise, Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991).

Tuesday Knight

Tuesday Knight Freddy Krueger

Chase’s funeral scene in Wes Craven’s New Nightmare hides a Tuesday Knight cameo.

Rey Mysterio

The famous wrestler made a cameo appearance in Freddy vs Jason (2003) as a guy who does a fantastic jump.

Evangeline Lilly

The girl in the green long-sleeved shirt present in the crowd right under half an hour into Freddy vs Jason (2003), is Evangeline!

…And Almost a Couple Others

Heather Langenkamp played the main protagonist in the original nightmare movie.  She was offered a cameo as a waitress in the latest 2010 remake of Nightmare on Elm Street…but declined the offer.

John Saxon played Heather’s father and the town’s police chief in the first movie, reprising his role in the third film, and then playing himself in A New Nightmare (1994). Saxon was offered a cameo in the 2010 remake as well, but schedule conflicts never let it happen.

Final Cameo Notes

In the many plentiful Nightmare on Elm Street movies, there have been many cameos and celebrity appearances.  There are probably many more cameos which have yet to be discovered. As a horror fan, you are obligated to help! If you find any cameos in any Nightmare on Elm Street movies which you do not see listed here, please comment below!

The Legendary Wes Craven

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Featured Scary Movies and Series

Wes Craven has been praised as one of the most imaginative and exciting horror creators in cinema. His legendary Nightmare on Elm Street series which birthed the insidious dream-weaving villain Freddy Krueger, and the hyper-self-aware Scream series which spawned the knife-wielding Ghostface killer, are just two of the many properties Craven has used to scare audiences the world over. Everyone who owns a television can probably tell you at least what these two aforementioned mass-murderers look like, but did you know prolific terror maestro Wes Craven actually started his film career in pornography? Or that Elm Street was actually based on the deathly nightmares of Cambodian refugees who had witnessed the American bombing of Cambodia?

Here we take a look at some of the most influential, and also the more obscure of Wes Craven’s directorial works, in order to pay tribute to and properly learn about a man who caused more sleepless nights than European Techno.

Last House On The Left (1972)


Craven clearly wanted to shock the world from the get-go. His first horror outing centred around two girls looking for drugs after attending a concert in the city. They run into a gang of escaped convicts who kidnap them for a night of rape, torture and their eventual muder. When the convicts later hide out at the home of one of the murdered girls, her parents soon work out what happened and plot their revenge. Last House managed to land itself on the Video Nasties list and was actually refused a certificate for cinema release by the British Board of Film Censors for its depictions of horiffic sadism and sexual violence.

The script, written by Craven in 1971, was originally intended to be a hardcore pornographic feature before filming began, whereupon it was decided that a much softer approach would be taken. One can only imagine what the original idea had in store for viewers. The story is inspired by Ingmar Bergman’s Swedish film The Virgin Spring (1960), which in turn is based on a Swedish ballad, Töres döttrar i Wänge. Who would’ve thought such classic and artistic inspiration could have gone into what is now an infamous rape/revenge horror?


The Hills Have Eyes (1977)


This is one of the rare occasions in horror where I actually prefer a remake to the original. Perhaps it has something to do with the similarities of Craven’s Hills with Tobe Hooper’s classic (and far more expertly crafted) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974), or perhaps I simply didn’t feel that the gut-wrenching implications of some scenes could be fully realised with this particular cast of actors. That being said, this is still a fairly competent and satisfyingly violent film based on the legend of Sawney Bean, a scottish clan leader said to have lived in a sea cave and cannibalized over a thousand people in the 16th Century. Craven’s depiction features the Carter family on their way to Los Angeles who crash their camper in an area of the Nevada desert inhabited by murderous cannibals. When they start to die off the family must fight back against the savages, which they do in quite spectacular fashion. Craven’s vision was raw and unflinching with this piece, even if some of it did need to be trimmed due to an X-rating. While it doesn’t jump out as a masterpiece in the genre, it would be a crime to write it off as just another cheap shock-horror.


The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)

The Serpent and the Rainbow Movie Poster
The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)


Bill Pullman is excellent in this mystifying mashup of Live and Let Die (1973) and In The Mouth of Madness (1944). Anthropologist Dennis (Bill Pullman) heads to Haiti, in a time of severe social and political unrest, to study an alleged voodoo drug that has been bringing the dead back to life. With the help of a witch doctor (Brent Jennings) and a fellow researcher (Cathy Tyson) Dennis must dodge Haitian authorities and solve the deadly mystery before it consumes him completely. With some genuinely unsettling imagery, fantastically engaging performances from its lead cast and implications around life, death and madness that have the potential to chill viewers to the core, The Serpent and The Rainbow proves itself to this day one of the more original and enthralling of Craven’s back-catalogue.


The People Under the Stairs (1991)


I’ll start by saying that I had no idea what to expect from this film. Having borrowed the dvd from a friend and basing my expectations on its goofy cover art, I was expecting something akin to other campy 70s and 80s horrors like Fright Night (1985) or perhaps even Beetlejuice (1988). After multiple viewings I now class this as one of Craven’s darkest films, straight-up shocking in many places while crawling under your skin in others. Craven was adamant to portray a respectful account of class warfare and personal struggles in poverty-stricken ghettos, and has expressed in other films such as Scream 2 his views on the need for “black representation” in horror, so what better villain than a couple of rich, incestuous white landlords? The violent psychopathy displayed when things start to kick off is unrivalled, with much of the terror being derived not from monsters or ghosts, but the potential of pure evil from humans. With a stellar performance from Brandon Adams as ‘Fool’ and Everett McGill and Wendy Robie as the nameless, psychotic Landlord and Lady, this is close to the top of a list of personal favourites, not just of Craven’s work but of horror in general, and should not be missed.


Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994)


Everyone is familiar with the Nightmare on Elm Street legacy, from the original breakout hit all the way to Freddy vs Jason, but I’d rather talk about what I consider the most interesting and underrated in the series. Now I’ll admit that when I first watched New Nightmare I was far too young to really be able to appreciate horror, never mind understanding any of the meta-layers underlying this gory flick. It still managed to shock me, and stick in my mind to this day, and it was one of my later revisits that helped me realise just what Craven was going for. Heather Langenkamp plays herself, years after the shooting of the original Nightmare films, when visions of Freddy begin to plague her in real life. This was definitely the beginning of Craven’s more self-aware phase which led onto the Scream series, and his playfulness in flirting with the fourth-wall more than pays off in breathing new life into Freddy as a villain, and the Nightmare series in general. I won’t give away too much, as there are several payoffs in Craven’s 1994 rethink that scream for multiple viewings.


Scream (1996)

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Scream is such a fun ride. Somehow Craven managed to craft a film that is blatantly self-aware yet balanced enough so that the self-referential comedy doesn’t once get in the way of bloody scares. It is witty and clever in similar ways to New Nightmare but a lot more playful and sometimes goofy in execution. Some references and nods to horror tropes and even Craven’s earlier pictures are terrifically on the nose, and more than welcome in that, though repeated viewings are warranted with plenty of subtleties to find. Matthew Lillard is brilliant as Stu Macher, wacky and on the border of being a complete clown while somehow retaining an imposing and intimidating air through his sheer size and intensity. Scream gleefully and violently subverts expectations set by genre greats, while paying homage to all that inspired it, and somehow having a better ending to many of the films it parodies.


Scream 2 (1997)


Somehow this one passed me by until very recently, though I’m almost ashamed to admit it now. Scream 2 is one of the better horror sequels out there, majorly due to its self awareness (as if it only exists as a punchline to scream’s continuous mention of a sequel) though also due in part to Craven’s consistency in style and substance. I found myself overjoyed when characters from the first began popping up and reuniting, and enjoying the introduction of new characters that, like the film itself, feel more an extension of Scream rather than a tacked-on rethink. Featuring possibly a better ending than even its predecessor did, all while retaining the meta-layers in almost every scene that made the first great.

Full Filmography

1972The Last House on the LeftHallmark Releasing / American International Pictures
1977The Hills Have EyesVanguard
1981Deadly BlessingUnited Artists
1982Swamp ThingEmbassy Pictures
1984A Nightmare on Elm StreetNew Line Cinema
1985The Hills Have Eyes Part IICastle Hill Productions
1986Deadly FriendWarner Bros.
1988The Serpent and the RainbowUniversal Pictures
1989Shocker
1991The People Under the Stairs
1994Wes Craven’s New NightmareNew Line Cinema
1995Vampire in BrooklynParamount Pictures
1996ScreamDimension Films
1997Scream 2
1999Music of the HeartMiramax
2000Scream 3Dimension Films
2005CursedMiramax
2005Red Eye
2010My Soul to TakeUniversal Pictures
2011Scream 4Dimension Films
from wikipedia.com