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Robert Englund on retiring Freddy Krueger and who should play the nightmare master next

Robert Englund on retiring Freddy Krueger and who should play the nightmare master next

Horror legend Robert Englund reflects on his career and comments on the future of the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise.

Before the documentary Hollywood Dreams & Nightmares: The Robert Englund Story drops on June 6, the legendary actor who plays Freddy Krueger in eight movies and a TV series is reflecting on his career and legacy. Many people (including myself) consider Englund an icon, though he appears to disagree. Englund says he’s met idols and isn’t one of them. Despite his Hollywood history as a prolific performer across film, video games, and more, Englund says luck got him to where he is today.

Englund’s life could have been quite different if he didn’t audition to play the nightmare master Freddy Krueger in Wes Craven’s low-budget slasher about a burned child serial killer running loose in victims’ dreams.

“I felt there was a cultural shift that people recognized,” Englund told Variety. “Horror is the punk rock of cinema in its own way. There was a recognition of pulp as a great ingredient in our cultural world. There’s room for pulp and melodrama, and the door opened wider for horror.”

After playing Freddy in multiple films and a TV series, Englund retired from the role, saying his time as the charismatic killer had come. In 2010, A Nightmare on Elm Street was remade with Jackie Earle Haley as Freddy. The film slayed at the box office but was ill-received by fans.

When asked about why he thinks fans responded poorly to the remake, Englund pointed out a critical change to Freddy’s story that could have marred the character for audiences.

“Jackie’s just so good, a wonderful actor, so I don’t think it was that,” Englund explains. “I’ve always thought that Freddy is described as a child killer. So when they made Freddy a child molester [in the remake], that’s not what Freddy is, I don’t think. By taking it to such a dark, dark place, there’s no room for the personality of Freddy to be exploited.”

When it comes to playing Freddy again, Englund says his days as the Springwood Slasher are no more. Freddy is a highly physical character, and Englund is no spring chicken. He thinks slipping into the sweater is better left to someone new, though he’d like to cameo if the studio decides to make another film. Englund says Kevin Bacon would be a fantastic choice when asked who should put on the glove for a new Nightmare movie.

“I know he respects the genre, and he’s such a fine physical actor,” he says. “I think that in the silences and in the way Kevin moves — it would be interesting.”

What do you think about Robert Englund’s Hollywood status? Is he an icon who’s just being humble? Who would you cast as Freddy in a reboot of A Nightmare on Elm Street? Let us know in the comments below.

Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/robert-englund-freddy-krueger-retiring/