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ROBERT ENGLUND WANTS A GAY REMAKE OF A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET

Robert Englund, best known for playing razor-fingered child murderer Freddy Krueger recently revealed that when Hollywood attempts to remake A Nightmare on Elm Street for a second time, he’d like to see it with a queer twist.

As some of you are aware, the closest we’ve come to a gay version of the franchise was A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge.

That sequel stars Mark Patton as Jessie, the object of Freddy’s aggression. The film was panned by critics and fans when it was released in 1985, but has since developed a cult following.

Viewers have pointed out the homoerotic subtext to the film’s story: Freddy tries to seduce Jessie, rather than kill him; one scene takes place in a leather bar; the high school coach flirts with his male students, and in another scene the coach is tied up and whipped naked while in the shower.

Since the release of the film, Patton has also come out as gay himself, and revealed he’s HIV+. There was so much scrutiny around the film and the effect it had on Patton’s career–there’s a documentary chronicling Elm Street 2 and Patton’s life after Elm Street called Scream Queen.

Here’s what Englund told TooFab:

“Because our society now is more damaged because of the opioid crisis, because of incredible diversity, because of the openness now with gender and sexuality, those kids now have to be different than the kids from the original Nightmare and someone has to write a different batch of kids and Freddy needs to be a different kind of evil,” Englund observes. “His evil needs to be, he needs to toy with what they like in the culture.”

“If they redid Nightmare 2, for instance, and really deal with the subtext, Freddy toying with that boy’s sexuality” he continues. “But the fact that we’re much more comfortable with that now, I think it would be really fun to have Freddy play with one kid who’s gay. Maybe one boy is not. Play with them. Tempt them. Force him out of the closet or back into the closet and we can do that. Audiences would accept that now. Freddy would do that because he’s in your head. But it is going to take somebody very clever to do that.”

He’s absolutely right. One of the great things about horror is that you cab explore themes that would otherwise be considered taboo in other genres. Quiet as it’s kept we need more queer representation in horror films, since that’s the one genre where you can take the most risks, creatively and financially.

I am a huge fan of the Elm Street franchise (Dream Warriors is my favorite), and if you’re looking to take a classic franchise and reboot it for a new audience, you have to diversify your cast. The new generation is much more open in regards to race, class, gender and sex, and these are topics that need to be explored in regards to developing your characters.

I hope with all sincerity that we will see this idea come to fruition in my lifetime, and if Robert doesn’t reprise his role as Freddy, it would be interesting to see who they choose; because I did not like the 2010 remake with Rooney Mara and Jackie Earl Haley.

The Scream Queen documentary can be seen on the horror streaming service Shudder.

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