Robert Englund Explains Why He Returned As Freddy Krueger For The Goldbergs

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Freddy Krueger’s appearance in the upcoming Halloween episode of The Goldbergs marks a strange and unexpected twist in the character’s decades-spanning history. So while plenty of A Nightmare on Elm Street fans would probably embrace the return of the classic killer regardless of the context, the news still left many of us wondering why actor Robert Englund chose a sitcom as the project with which to reprise his most famous role for the first time since 2003’s Freddy vs. Jason.

Show creator Adam F. Goldberg has already provided his side of the story, recalling how he finally convinced Englund after months of contact. And now, speaking to the New York Post, the star himself has offered some clarification, explaining how Goldberg convinced him that Freddy’s ‘80s heyday was worth revisiting through this nostalgia-heavy series.

“I’ve been very protective of the character for years … I said no to [series creator] Adam [Goldberg],” Englund told the site. “And then he sent me probably the most beautiful fan letter I ever received, telling me how much A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors meant to him. And then I started thinking about my fans, how it dovetails with the ’80s experience and this sort of retro memory play that The Goldbergs is about.”

Englund went on to explain how the Elm Street lead had managed to become a cultural icon over the years, saying:

“Freddy’s been absorbed by popular culture. There’s Hello Kitty decals now. He’s been on The Simpsons, South Park, Family Guy, Rick and Morty. He’s in comic books. He’s everywhere with action figures and dolls and stuff, late-night talk show punch lines. It’s like Frankenstein now: he’s just a by-word, a logo for the memory of an experience. So I was able to kind of make peace.”

Adam F. Goldberg certainly has his share of Freddy memories. In a recent interview, the producer recalled how he couldn’t sleep for a week after watching A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, and based on an early clip we’ve seen from the upcoming episode – titled “Mister Knifey-Hands” – the show seems set to reflect such childhood traumas.

The outing will be airing on October 24th, and at this rate, it could well be Englund’s final screen appearance as the dream demon. But while the chances of another Nightmare on Elm Street movie starring the original Freddy seem pretty slim, the actor did say earlier this week that he might have one more film left in him, so feel free to hold onto your hopes.

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