The horror genre has always been known for rebooting, remaking, reinventing and cannibalizing itself on a regular basis, so the odd subtle homage often tends to go unnoticed. On the surface, there isn’t much in common between upcoming sequel The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It and Wes Craven’s A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, but director Michael Chavez managed to sneak in an Easter Egg nonetheless.
However, the next adventure for Ed and Lorraine Warren doesn’t even reference one of the Elm Street movies that Craven was involved in, but rather 1988’s fourth installment The Dream Master, which is regarded by fans as one of the better entries despite the absence of the creator in any sort of meaningful creative capacity.
Directed by Renny Harlin, who would go on to helm Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger and The Long Kiss Goodnight, Brian Helgeland also received his first screenplay credit on The Dream Master before eventually becoming a two-time Academy Award nominated writer, so there’s a decent pedigree attached to the 1988 effort. One of the most memorable scenes involves Freddy Krueger and a waterbed, and Chaves admitted that he used it to influence one of his own jump scares.
“The fourth one was the first one I saw, which was the one with the waterbed. Which, yes, this is a shameless reference to that movie. Ironically, my assistant director Jeffrey Wetzel worked on that movie, so I had him tell me all the waterbed secrets. I needed to know how they did it.”
The Conjuring universe might be the highest-grossing horror brand of all-time, but it clearly isn’t above drawing inspiration from some of the genre’s most recognizable properties, and you can image Chaves’ excitement when he got to incorporate one of his favorite moments from A Nightmare on Elm Street into The Devil Made Me Do It, and he even had one of the crew members that was there over 30 years ago to assist him with it for good measure.