Robert Englund Talks Donning the Freddy Makeup One Last Time with Fangoria!
Robert Englund discussed donning the Freddy Krueger makeup one last time with Fangoria. Here’s an excerpt of their exclusive interview, courtesy of Yahoo! Movies UK:
Robert Englund has spoken out on why he has chosen to get made up as legendary horror character Freddy Krueger of ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street’ one last time at an upcoming US fan convention.
Englund portrayed the iconic villain in eight films, beginning with 1984’s original ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street,’ and ending with 2003’s ‘Freddy vs. Jason.’ The role made him a major celebrity for a time, with a vast marketing empire, regular personal appearances at prestigious events, and the TV series ‘Freddy’s Nightmares.’
Now aged 67, Englund is well aware that his days of playing Freddy on screen are long gone – but he remains a prolific actor in horror movies, and a hugely popular figure on the convention circuit.
This August will see Englund appear at Flashback Weekend in Chicago, where he will don the Freddy make-up for the first time in eleven years and pose for photographs with fans for charity. It’s said this will be the last time the actor will wear the make-up of his most famous role.
Speaking to Fangoria, Englund shed some light on how this came to pass.
“I think late last year, or very early this year, a wonderful company that I’ve worked for before up in Chicago, Flashback Weekend, approached my handler. They got back to me with this idea of maybe donning the Freddy makeup.
“I haven’t worn the makeup since 2003 and I think the last time I ever wore it in personal appearance public was at a Video Convention in Las Vegas. So, it would’ve been the same year ‘[Who Framed] Roger Rabbit’ went to video. That’s a long time ago. I just remember that my line was longer than Roger Rabbit’s [laughs].”
Very concerned to give the best experience and the best photos possible for fans, Englund was insistent on getting the best possible lighting, and even persuaded famed make-up artist Robert Kurtzman to apply the make-up.
The make-up design on Freddy varied from film to film, but Englund says the key model Kurtzman will be following will be the designs of Kevin Yagher used on the middle ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ films; music to the ears of fans, as the make-up on parts 2,3 and 4 are generally regarded the best.
Still, Englund was keen to downplay the suggestion that this was his last appearance as Freddy Krueger:
“I’m not going to dress up as Freddy. I’m going to be “Robert Englund donning his famous Freddy makeup for the last time,” and I’m going to make a special Flashback Weekend t-shirt that the fans can get and I’m just going to put on my old Freddy boots and a pair of black jeans and the glove.
“But I’m not going to wear the hat, because if I wear the hat, we’re always fighting with lighting. You can’t really see it’s me and if I dress completely like Freddy, then I just look like another Freddy impersonator.”
It’s worth noting that Jackie Earle Haley, Englund’s replacement in the much-maligned 2010 ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street’ remake, does not look likely to return to the role either.
Englund admits that the long-standing appeal of the role is down to being adored by the crowd, and getting to really cut loose as an actor.
“You always want to be loved as an actor. That’s part of why we do this. I was quite successful in the theater and I had probably done a dozen, if not more, movies by the time I did Freddy…
“In film acting you’re constantly evolving. You’re trying to do less and less and less, which coming from theater isn’t the most fun. Behavioral acting, I call it, can be nothing more sometimes than listening to a little voice in your head say, ‘Don’t act.'”
Englund also speaks of enjoying “being surrounded by a fanciful story. ‘Nightmare on Elm Street,’ it doesn’t take place in reality. It does, but you almost have to look at it as a story, a myth, a tale…a legend that’s being told around a campfire and being regurgitated to the audience…you’re straddling the world of reality and the subconscious and the dreamscape.”
You can read the full piece here.