Movies & Television

Is Freddy Krueger Based on a True Story? Elm Street Villain Explored

A number of horror movies these days are either based on true events or inspired by them and the classic horror movies and villains also have a source of inspiration and we unpack the origin of Freddy Krueger and confirm if the character is based on a true story or not.

Robert Englund has famously portrayed the villain throughout the entire Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, sporting the unforgettable burnt pizza face.

Freddy Krueger is the main antagonist of the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, who first appeared with his fedora and red/green striped jumper in Wes Craven’s 1984 classic A Nightmare on Elm Street.

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Is Freddy Krueger Based on a True Story?

No, the villain Freddy Krueger is not based on a true story, however, the premise of A Nightmare on Elm Street is.

During an interview with Vulture, director Wes Craven revealed that his idea for the movie came from an article he read in the LA Times depicting a family that moved from the Killing Fields of Cambodia, only for the young son to meet a disturbing end:

“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 A Nightmare on Elm Street.”

Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

The Fake True Story that Became an Urban Legend

As for the character of Freddy Krueger himself, fans thought they had found an answer when a 2017 Facebook post by Lamaur Foster claimed the killer was based on the 1800s serial killer Frederik Kruger – different spelling.

However, Foster later admitted to making the story up after stumbling across the image of the grave online and thought it would make a good bedtime story.

Despite the story being fake, the origin swept across the internet and became somewhat of an urban legend. However, Freddy Krueger from the movie franchise still remains a fictional creation.

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A Nightmare on Elm Street Movies in Order

Luckily, the Elm Street franchise is one of the few iconic horror series that has received the fewest remakes – unlike Halloween, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and Friday the 13th – with only one made in 2010.

The rest have all been sequels to the originals and spin-offs and we provide an easy-to-follow list below of all nine movies in the order you should watch them:

  • 1. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
  • 2. A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge (1985)
  • 3. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987)
  • 4. A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988)
  • 5. A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989)
  • 6. Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991)
  • 7. Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994)
  • 8. Freddy vs. Jason (2003)
  • 9. A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)

By Jo Craig – [email protected]

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Jo Craig

Being a pop culture writer and a proud geek of all trades, Jo loves to dissect fandoms and marvel at their insides. The entirety of The Lord of the Rings, superhero origins, the Ghost of Tsushima score, the Wings of Freedom, and the endless search for a sleepy Tyranitar are but a few of Jo's passions, with a penchant for contributing to the geek culture community.

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