Cult actor Robert Englund–known for playing the iconic role of murderer Freddy Kruger in the Nightmare on Elm Street film series–has just made a surprising request. Englund wants to see a gay remake of a film from the series.
The first sequel to the original Nightmare film, titled A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge, debuted to negative reviews back in 1985, but has since earned a devoted following for a peculiar reason. The film has come to be known as the gayest horror movie of all time.
Freddy’s Revenge starred actor Mark Patton as Jessie, the object of Freddy’s aggression. Viewers often note 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. Since the release of the film, Patton has also come out as gay himself, and revealed he’s HIV+. The odd gayness of the film–and the effect it had on Patton’s career–were recently detailed in the documentary Scream, Queen.
Now Englund thinks the series should embrace the gayness. In an interview with TooFab, he talks about recontextualizing the Nightmare series for a modern audience.
“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.”
A Nightmare on Elm Street got the reboot treatment back in 2010 starring Rooney Mara and Jackie Earle Haley. The film received negative reviews, and the series has since gone dormant.