How Johnny Depp’s Cameo In A Nightmare On Elm Street 6 Came To Be

A Nightmare on Elm Street

1984’s A Nightmare on Elm Street famously served as the big screen debut of one Johnny Depp, but one little tidbit you might not be aware of is that the Oscar-nominated actor also returned for a brief cameo in the sixth installment of the slasher series.

You wouldn’t think that the original Elm Street movie left much room for a Glen Lantz comeback, seeing how Depp’s character met a typically gruesome end at the hands of Freddy Krueger. Still, in the realm of nightmares, anything is possible, and so the star – then fresh off the success of Tim Burton’s Edward Scissorhands – makes a fleeting appearance during a dream sequence in 1991’s Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare.

The moment comes in the dream of Spencer Lewis, played by Breckin Meyer. As Spencer dozes off in front of the TV, a commercial comes on parodying the “This Is Your Brain on Drugs” PSAs that were airing at the time, in which Depp’s character fries an egg before getting knocked in the face with a pan by Freddy. To save the surprise, Depp was credited as “Oprah Noodlemantra,” while his character was simply listed as “Guy on TV.”

So, how did this weird little cameo come to be? Well, according to Screen Rant, it all came down to Depp’s connection to Freddy’s Dead director Rachel Talalay. To elaborate, Talalay produced the 1990 John Waters comedy Cry Baby, starring Depp, and so the filmmaker used that connection to ask for a favor.

Incidentally, while Freddy’s next movie – the 1994 meta-horror Wes Craven’s New Nightmare – featured several cast members from previous pics playing themselves, director Wes Craven chose not to invite Depp back. Apparently, the actor’s star had risen so high at that point that Craven was too intimidated to ask, though after the film’s release, Depp said that he would’ve been happy to return if he’d been given the opportunity.

Jump to the present day, and the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise isn’t doing much of anything, but so long as Freddy remains one of pop culture’s most beloved villains, we can never rule out the possibility of another reboot.