A Nightmare on Elm Street is a perfect example of a classic '80s horror flick. It took the traditional slasher formula that started with Halloween and turned it on its head, taking what had become a tired genre and made it unique. Sure, the sequels got more and more goofy as the franchise continued, and the remake did absolutely nothing to reinvigorate the series, but the original film will always be terrifying. After all, everyone has to go to sleep sometime.
It's been almost 30 years since the original premiere of A Nightmare on Elm Street. That's more than enough reason to celebrate, but on top of 30 years of Freddy, Halloween is almost upon us. It's just good timing, and series creator Wes Craven seems to agree: the original film's director has been taking to Twitter all month to let fans in on all the behind-the-scenes secrets that made the movie such a classic.
Going by his tweets, Wes Craven had a horrifying childhood. Not only was the idea of dying after falling asleep inspired by actual events, but so was Freddy Krueger himself:
ANOES was inspired by actual events. I read an article about a boy scared to go to sleep. When he finally did, he died. #30YearsofNightmare
— Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 1, 2014
Freddy Krueger's appearance was inspired by a man who stared at me through my window one night. #30YearsofNightmare pic.twitter.com/jxocp6949V — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 5, 2014
Freddy's iconic claw may be the villain's killer weapon of choice, but that doesn't mean he himself is immune to it or the makeup artists:
The idea behind Freddy’s glove was rooted in the primal fear of attack by animal claws. #30YearsofNightmare pic.twitter.com/gp5P6x5gDu — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 14, 2014
— Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 9, 2014
The film was known for its groundbreaking special effects at the time. They looked amazing, but they certainly weren't easy to pull off:
This scene was shot by stretching Spandex across a hole and having Freddy press against it. #30YearsofNightmare pic.twitter.com/6OL06KqrAh — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 13, 2014
The sparking glove effect seen throughout the movie was achieved by attaching the glove to a car battery. #30YearsofNightmare — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 16, 2014
It just wouldn't be the same Nightmare on Elm Street if Craven didn't include a bunch of Easter eggs or Johnny Depp:
— Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 19, 2014
I was unsure of Johnny Depp for the role of Glen but gave in when my daughter insisted that girls would love him. #30YearsofNightmare — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 3, 2014
The words "Elm Street" are not spoken at all during the film. #30YearsofNightmare pic.twitter.com/aoMvR9GbtJ — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 8, 2014
What's most amazing out of everything is that Wes Craven revealed that A Nightmare on Elm Street, despite being considered a classic today, almost didn't happen in the first place:
In the end, it all worked out for the best:
— Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 20, 2014
...but in the end, it all worked out for the best:
New Line Cinema was saved from bankruptcy by ANOES' success, and was jokingly nicknamed "the house that Freddy built." #30YearsofNightmare — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 7, 2014
I believe NOES cost $1.8M to produce, which it nearly made back in its $1.2M opening weekend. #30YearsofNightmare pic.twitter.com/9Zlf6U58k5 — Wes Craven (@wescraven) October 12, 2014
Even now, 30 years after the villain's debut and countless sequels, Freddy Krueger and A Nightmare on Elm Street stand as iconic horror masterpieces. Here's to another 30 years of terror!