Posted on Wednesday, January 30th, 2008 by Hunter Stephenson
This is what happens when you get the sniffles and ignore the beat for a couple of hours: the world of Hollywood deals starts exploding with awfulness. Something in the Elm Street-verse started feeling askew a few weeks ago when Freddy Krueger himself, Robert Englund, said he thought it was a good idea to remake Wes Craven‘s A Nightmare on Elm Street and perhaps pass his claw on to someone else. Word arrives today that production house Platinum Dunes (of which Michael Bay is a partner) and New Line Cinema are setting a plan into motion to completely revamp the franchise, just like they’re doing with Friday the 13th and Jason Voorhees, which starts filming in early May. Platinum Dunes have previously set their signature glossy and tan paws on The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Eric Red’s The Hitcher and the upcoming Hitchcock-remake The Birds.
A writer will not be hired for the project until after the strike, and no director is attached. Like I said, Englund probably won’t be back. Platinum Dunes can have Jason, fine. Those films are addictive T&A crowd-pleasers and I’m sure they’ll make Crystal Lake shimmer and pop like an airbrushed painting on the side of a stoner van. But ANOES needs a visionary director that will keep the 10-year-old kids who sneak into the remake up in sheer fright for years. This is real deal psychological horror, complete with dream logic, and not simply “caller’s in the house” cliche after cliche, though Craven’s film did that well, as well. I mean, can you imagine the ghostly girls jumping rope singing “3, 4 better lock your door” in Bay-protege-o-vision? Why not just ring up Larry Flynt to do the casting and work the water hose?
The blame here really goes to New Line, though. Freddy Krueger saved that studio’s arse several times throughout its history, and while a ANOES remake is never going to compete with The Hobbit for box office, is it too much to ask to hand the franchise over to a director who will leave the throbbing hormones to the other schlock that passes for horror these days? Johnny Depp might have even done a cameo if it was up to snuff. As for Englund, if he’s okay with ending his contribution with Freddy vs. Jason, who can argue? He’s not right for a water hose reimagining anyhow.