He himself has said before that Kevin Bacon would be his choice to play Freddy Krueger, when the studio resurrects the “Nightmare on Elm Street” series, but that doesn’t mean it hurts like a grenade to the grundies to hear the words “I’m done” when Robert Englund is asked whether he’d ever play his trademark role again (many have been hoping he’d don the Christmas jumper and glove one last time). Alas, the veteran actor has indeed reminded fans that he won’t be returning to the role.
Despite agreeing to wear the demonic mug for an upcoming documentary, the 70-year-old actor is convinced he’ll never play Freddy Krueger on film again.
“I’m too old to do another Freddy now. If I do a fight scene now it’s got to be real minimal because I can’t snap my head for eight different takes and different angles. My spine gets sore,” he told EW.
“I can still be mean and scary, but I’m mostly relegated now to sort of Van Helsing roles, old doctors and shit. So it’s fun that the last moment of me ever playing Freddy is a wink to the audience.”
Englund had in fact told Moviehole a few years back that he’d be keen to appear in a new “Elm Street” movie – but only as a professor or doctor, in some sort of wink wink cameo.
And while a script for a Freddy origins movie, John McNaughton-penned “The First Kills”, sparked Englund’s interest a few years back – even then the actor questioned whether a younger actor shouldn’t take the role.
“ I can do a couple of takes, but then I wake up the next morning and feel like I’ve been playing football. I can barely get out of bed, so I’m having a lot more fun now doing these “suit and tie” roles.”
Instead of the prequel film, Warner Bros opted to remake “A Nightmare on Elm Street”, casting Jackie Earle Haley in the Krueger role.
Though the movie wasn’t a critical or commercial success, Englund applauded his successor. But like the rest of us, he loathed the film as much as the idea behind it.
In a 2015 appearance, Englund said he though Haley did a great job.. “even though I didn’t like the remake.Jackie’s terrific, he’s just a wonderful actor, and I’m happy to pass the baton to him.”
Englund has said a few times that he thought it was “too soon” to reboot the “Elm Street” series, particularly when audiences identify Englund with the part. It hadn’t been that long since we’d seen his incarnation on the big screen, after all – only a decade or so prior (“Freddy vs Jason”). And he’s flippin’ spot on there; replacing Krueger was as damaging to the peepers as the proposal to switch out Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones.
WB/NLC are planning to reboot “Elm Street” a second time – assumingly without Jackie Earle Haley – but its moving about as fast as a toy Thomas the Tank Engine in a puddle of piss. But here’s a much better idea : touch up the original prints of “Elm Street”, “Elm Street 3”, maybe even the next two in the series, and unquestionably “New Nightmare”, and pop those back into theaters – they’re all bound to play hammer and tong harder and better than any new “Elm Street” would.