A Nightmare of Elm Street is considered a classic American horror movie, one that gets featured during many people’s horror movie marathons. It follows Freddy Krueger, the striped-sweater-wearing homicidal ghost who haunts your nightmares. While most of the Elm Street story is fictionalized, the inspiration for the idea of Freddy Krueger comes from a real story with real people.
The director, Wes Craven, says his idea for A Nightmare on Elm Street came after reading a news story in the L.A. Times. Vulture says Craven spoke of the article about a family who had left Cambodia in the ’70s to escape the genocide of the killing fields. They became refugees who ventured to the United States looking for a better life, but found tragedy instead.
As quoted in Vulture, Wes Craven said…
“I’d read an article in the L.A. Times about a family who had escaped the Killing Fields in Cambodia and managed to get to the U.S. Things were fine, and then suddenly the young son was having very disturbing nightmares. He told his parents he was afraid that if he slept, the thing chasing him would get him, so he tried to stay awake for days at a time. When he finally fell asleep, his parents thought this crisis was over. Then they heard screams in the middle of the night. By the time they got to him, he was dead. He died in the middle of a nightmare. Here was a youngster having a vision of a horror that everyone older was denying. That became the central line of Nightmare on Elm Street.”
I personally tried to search for this L.A. Times article, but could not find it. If you go searching for this article and you find it, I want to SEE IT! I’d be so interested to readddd, so email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Are you a fan of A Nightmare on Elm Street?