By now, I’m sure the more adept horror fans among you are familiar with all the legal hoopla surrounding the Friday the 13th franchise. Unfortunate as that continues to be, we won’t discuss that any further today – though it’ll be used to draw a parallel.
You see, the fine folks over at Bloody Disgusting recently did an investigation of their own and found out that something similar has happened with A Nightmare on Elm Street. Basically, the estate of Wes Craven has regained the rights to both the film franchise itself, as well as the iconic Freddy Krueger character. International rights, meanwhile, remain with Warner Bros./New Line Cinema.
To avoid any confusion, here a breakdown courtesy of the aforementioned Bloody Disgusting:
“Long story short, the law is that writers can reclaim ownership of their work after 35 years, and 2019 marks 35 years since Elm Street was released. Like Victor Miller, Craven’s estate was, therefore, able to legally reclaim ownership of the original film this year, which was of course written and directed by the late Wes Craven.”
Thankfully, this puts A Nightmare on Elm Street in somewhat of a better spot than Friday the 13th, as I wouldn’t use the term “legal limbo” to describe its situation. Instead, the Wes Craven estate could take the series to another studio and get the ball rolling yet again.
If they were to, then I suppose somebody like Universal or Sony would develop the movie itself, with WB simply distributing it overseas when the time came. None of us are here to sort out the specifics, so let’s just hope something comes together in the not too distant future.
Because of this new development, one would assume this means A Nightmare on Elm Street will be rebooted yet again. Though the 2010 remake proved successful enough to warrant a sequel, WB allowed for the clock to run out on Jackie Earle Haley’s contract and nothing followed. Original star Robert Englund says he has one more go-round left in him, but my gut says studio execs will desire someone willing to stick around for multiple installments instead.