Not TOO Close
but Personal with
Robert Englund aka,
Freddy Krueger from
"A Nightmare on
Elm Street"

by Carlin Langley

When you're going to be meeting someone who has built his career primarily around portraying a
knife-gloved, blood-thirsty, monster like Freddy Krueger, what does one expect? What kind of
person gets a thrill out of being the world's most infamous "slasher" and debatedly, the most
frightening horror creature that Hollywood has ever created. It turned out that instead of being
more like Freddy Krueger, Robert Englund was alot more like the character "Willy" that shot him
to overnight TV stardom, in the NBC TV miniseries "V". Willy was the soft spoken alien, who
fathered the child with the earth girl, that was to bring the Visitors and the earth dwellers together
and bring peace between us. Unfortunately, the NBC executives killed the show, before we
could kill each other, and after being taken from mini-series to regular series, "V" was cancelled.

Robert Englund said, "A terrible thing happened. They cancelled "V". They brought John
Dykstra in, and if you liked Star Wars, you know who I'm talking about. They brought John
Dykstra to television, and elevated the special effects on television from BAD GREEN
MAKEUP to the state of the art special effects that you see on television today, and that started
with "V". So I'm really proud of that. They made alot of mistakes. They fired some
African-American actors on the show. They didn't read the demographics right. It was a costly
show, they had too many regulars. They cancelled the show, and within a month of them
cancelling the show, I took my first trip for free, First Class with my wife, on the Concorde to
Europe, where the show went on to #1 for two years for prime time. A HUGE, HUGE
mistake... since then, American television has filled itself with various versions of Star Trek, the
Sci-Fi channel, and everything else. They cancelled the show when it was in the top 10 or the
top 20, because it was too expensive. It was a network decision."

Robert Englund now is "The Big 5-0, and going on the big 5-1." I said, "You've aged well." and
he said, "Well, this isn't my real color (of hair). I just ran around Malibu for a month with my
Germanic blonde hair, with Casper Van Dien and a computer generated snake, a kinda low rent
version of "Anaconda". The irony is, we had less money to spend, less star power, unless you
want to count Casper and myself, course, no one knew who Jennifer Lopez was. We really
didn't have the budget that they had for Anaconda, but I honestly think our CGI will be more
sophisticated, because technology is moving so fast now, so I think our special effects will
probably be better. But this is definitely what we call a shelf life movie. You go looking for
Ananconda at Blockbuster, after picking up your pizza, and you can't find it. And right next to it,
in the SNAKE section, under Olivia de Haviland, the snake, will be "PYTHON", which is what I
just finished doing (and will be released sometime in 2000). That's why my hair is all weird and
blonde now. I look like a combination of a GAY SURFER and Troy Donahue."

How long did it take to have the makeup for Freddy done? "The basic makeup is 4 hours, before
I go to work. But if they're rigging me with goat bladders and hydraulics, and tubes to make my
head expand, or blood spurts, or the chest-of-souls, or things like that, then, I've been in the
chair for as long as 7 hours, before I work. And you know that in low-budget horror, an average
day of filming is 12 to 14 hours, not counting my makeup. It took me a couple of movies to
realize that I had to put it into my contract, that I needed 8 hours after I got my makeup off,
before I put my makeup on again. Then I turned that into 10 hours, because sometimes, I'd tear
my makeup off at midnite, hoping to go out with someone to have a beer with someone in the
group for last call, and it would make my eyes swell up. Because I would rip it off, instead of
taking it off slowly and gently. I didn't care what I looked like. I'd put a pair of sunglasses on,
run out for the beer, you know with the crew, at quarter till one in the morning, cause we'd just
been working 14 or 15 hours, get a beer and a shot, sitting there, and then, some little AD would
come and say, Mr. Englund, Mr. Englund, we need you at 7 AM, which means, that I gotta be
back at 3, and now it's quarter till one. And my eyes are swollen shut, and I'm gonna put glue
and latex back on my swollen and delicate eyelids, so now they're raw. So I learned to put like a
10 hour guarantee, from the time I removed it, until the time I had to be back the next day.
Sometimes, if they couldn't give me that, I'd just work around the clock, cause I'd rather just not
take it off."

Unfortunately, Robert wasn't in his makeup when he appeared at the opening of the Darkness
Haunted House, which was what brought him to town. But he did leave the impression of his
hands, and a signed "Freddy Glove" for visitors to the haunted house to view. EXP magazine
and the Complex will be taking their annual bus tour to the Darkness coming up the end of
October. Tickets are on sale at the Complex or by calling EXP magazine. Your purchase of the
ticket for the Darkness gets you the bus ride there from The Complex, as well as admission to
TerrorVision as well. This was sold out early last year, so get your reservations early!!! Also be
on the lookout for "Freddy meets Jason" which was scheduled to start filming this month, for
release next year. Robert will once again be re-incarnating Freddy, and Jason will come back for
more thrills and chills. Who will win? Robert told us, they plan on having two endings to the film,
and the audience will never know when they go, which ending will be used that night. One night
Freddy wins, and the next night, Jason wins! So remember, you heard it here first!!!


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