Robert Englund, star of the “Nightmare on Elm Street” films, signing copies of Hollywood Monster
* 10/13/09 7:00 PM at Dark Delicacies – West Burbank Blvd. Burbank, CA
* 10/22/09 7:00 PM at Bookends – East Ridgewood Ave. Ridgewood, NJ.
Englund was born in Glendale, California on June 6th 1947, the son of Janis (née McDonald) and C. Kent Englund, an aeronautics engineer who helped develop the Lockheed U-2 aircraft. He has Swedish ancestry. Englund began studying acting at the age of twelve in Normal IL. While he was in high school, he attended the Cranbrook Theatre School (organized by the Cranbrook Educational Community) in Bloomfield Hills. He then attended California State University Northridge for three years before transferring to Michigan’s Oakland University, where he trained at the Meadow Brook Theatre, at the time a branch of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Englund has been married three times. He currently resides in Laguna Beach, California.
Since his first film, Buster and Billie, in 1974, Englund has made over 100 appearances on film and television. His early film roles usually typed him as a nerd or a redneck, and he first gained attention in the role of Willie, the lovably innocent alien in the 1983 miniseries V, as well as the 1984 sequel V: The Final Battle, and V: The Series.
After his huge success in A Nightmare on Elm Street, Englund became the first new horror movie star since Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing in the 1960s. His association with the genre led him to top-billed roles in The Phantom of the Opera (1989), The Mangler (1995), and 2001 Maniacs (2005). While no longer a headliner, today he is revered by horror fans as an elder statesman of the genre.
Englund is one of only two actors to play a horror character eight consecutive times, the other being Doug Bradley, who portrayed the Pinhead character eight times in the Hellraiser film series. Englund has said that he enjoys the role of Freddy as it gives him a break from always playing the nice guy; indeed, many people who have worked with Englund attest to his congeniality. Makeup artists responsible for the Krueger makeup have commented that Englund was so friendly and talkative that it made the lengthy makeup application slightly more challenging.
Englund’s TV appearances include starring in the short-lived series Nightmare Cafe (1992), in which he played Blackie, the mysterious proprietor of the title cafe, and reprising his role of “Freddy Krueger” in the series Freddy’s Nightmares. His guest spots include the science fiction series Babylon 5, Masters of Horror, MadTV, Sliders, and Knight Rider, where he played a phantom haunting a film studio. He provided the voice of magician Felix Faust in Justice League, The Riddler on The Batman and The Vulture on The Spectacular Spider-Man and on the upcoming series The Super Hero Squad Show . On the TV witch drama Charmed (Episode: “Size Matters”), he played a demon who used the services of a lackey to lure people into a decrepit household (where he lived in the walls) and shrank them down to action figure size. He also appeared on an episode of Married… with Children as The Devil.
Englund performed as host of the Horror Hall of Fame awards show three times from 1989-1991.
Englund made his directorial début with the 1989 horror film 976-EVIL. His second feature, Killer Pad, was released direct-to-DVD in 2008. He is currently in pre-production to direct The Vij, about a young priest who is led by an evil genie to commit murder, and who falls in love with an old witch who is not what she seems.
Robert Englund has written a memoir, Hollywood Monster: A Walk Down Elm Street with the Man of Your Dreams with coauthor Alan Goldsher, to be published by Pocket Books on October 13, 2009.