Hollywood Monster: A Walk Down Elm Street with the Man of Your Dreams

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9781845135058: Hollywood Monster: A Walk Down Elm Street with the Man of Your Dreams


You've seen him in the A Nightmare on Elm Street series -- and in your darkest dreams. The sadistic killer with the flame-charred face. The knife-blade claws. The razor-sharp wit. Freddy...But you've never seen him like this. Unflinching. Uncensored. Unmasked.

Meet Robert Englund, the award-winning actor best known for his role as Freddy Krueger -- the legendary horror icon featured on the American Film Institute's "100 Greatest Heroes and Villains" roster -- a character as unforgettable and enduring as Bela Lugosi's Dracula and Boris Karloff's Frankenstein. Now, for the first time, the man behind the latex mask tells his story in this captivating new memoir, published to celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of the first A Nightmare on Elm Street film.

You see, Robert Englund is no monster at all, but a deeply funny, charming Hollywood veteran. Packed with Robert's hilarious stories, playful self-deprecation, and a generous helping of never-before-revealed A Nightmare on Elm Street trivia, Hollywood Monster offers an unparalleled look at the beloved film icon. With insider savvy and gallows humor, Robert recounts his audition for Wes Craven, the inspiration for Freddy's character, the grueling makeup sessions, his soon-to-be-famous costars, the often disastrous on-set blunders, and the wave of popularity that propelled this humble California surfer kid all the way to the top.

Of course, fame and fortune as Freddy came years after the young actor shared a trailer with screen legend Henry Fonda, was punched in the face by Richard Gere, took down Burt Reynolds, and muscled his way between Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sally Field, and Jeff Bridges.

But soon after his high-profile stint in the groundbreaking TV miniseries V, Robert Englund took on the most celebrated role of his career -- the macabre and wisecracking killer who quickly became a household name. From the moment Freddy Krueger dragged his claws across a rusty pipe in the opening dream sequence, a legend had been unleashed -- and a star was born. This is his story.

"Welcome to prime time, bitch."
-- Frederick Charles Krueger, bastard son of a hundred maniacs

"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

About the Author:

 Robert Englund gained international cult stardom as the razor-fingered horror villain Freddy Krueger in Wes Craven’s 1984 classic, A Nightmare on Elm Street--a role he reprised in six sequels, including the 2003 smash, Freddy vs. Jason. Englund has also directed and starred in many films and TV shows, including the beloved science fiction series, V.  Robert lives in Laguna Beach with his wife, Nancy.

Novelist/ghostwriter/journalist Alan Goldsher is the author of the forthcoming Beatles/horror/humor mash-up Paul is Undead: The British Zombie Invasion (Gallery Books, June 22, 2010), as well as Hard Bop Academy: The Sidemen of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, Modest Mouse: A Pretty Good Read, and the novel Jam. Midnight Movie, the novel he co-wrote with director Tobe Hooper ("The Texas Chainsaw Massacre") will be published in 2011. Written as A.M. Goldsher, his chicklit novels The True Naomi Story, Reality Check, and Today's Special were released in the U.K. and Marabout in France in 2008, with No Ordinary Girl to come in 2011.

As a ghostwriter, Alan has collaborated on projects with comedians Bernie Mac and Fred Willard; actor Robert Englund, Ironman triathlete Sarah Reinertsen, and "American Idol" contestant Sanjaya Malakar, among other notable celebrities and public figures.

Alan's sportswriting has been seen in ESPN The Magazine, ESPN.com, NBA.com, and ChicagoBulls.com, and he reviews books for Kirkus.

During his 10-plus years as a professional bassist, Goldsher recorded with Janet Jackson, Cypress Hill, and Naughty by Nature; toured the world with Digable Planets; and performed at the 1994 Grammy Awards.

Alan lives and writes in Chicago.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Chapter 1


Zanita MacMillan was the most beautiful girl in the sixth grade. Like most of the other boys on the playground, I had a crush on her. Zanita would visit me in my dreams and my preadolescent fantasies. Eventually she showed up as the heroine in my recurring Cold War nightmare. The nightmare always ended with my head cradled in Zanita's lap, a thin trickle of blood at the corner of my mouth, and hordes of North Korean Communists replete with long winter jackets, combat boots, and army-issue hats, earflaps up, emblazoned with a single red star in the center, overrunning the playground. In the nightmare, I had fought to the end and was wounded and dying. The enemy soldiers swarmed over the school fences, commandeered the elementary school rooftops, and slowly advanced on Zanita and me as we huddled against the handball court. This was either the product of too many war movies or too many drop-and-cover drills. It recurred for years. And years. And years.

Stephanie was the belle of the ball, the most popular girl in my junior high school. She was pretty, and sweet, and I had a tiny bit of a crush on her, so when I found out she was involved with a semiprofessional children's theater in the San Fernando Valley called the Teenage Drama Workshop, I was intrigued. If acting was cool to the cutest eighth-grade girl in the Valley, that was good enough for me, so when she invited me to check out a show, I couldn't refuse.

Turned out this Teenage Drama Workshop was a big deal, more than just some rinky-dink community theater, and featured child actors from all over the country, some of whom ultimately became professionals. The first time I went to see Stephanie perform, for instance, I was struck dumb by her young, brunette costar, Sharon Hugueny. Sharon, who, come the early 1960s, became a teen heartthrob and appeared in films and on television with the likes of Troy Donahue, Sandra Dee, and Peter Fonda, was a knockout, and I was smitten. If I could meet girls like Stephanie and Sharon while hanging around this theater workshop, well, the stage sounded like the place to be.

The following summer, I offered the Workshop my services, such as they were; having never acted before, I figured I'd start out at the bottom of the totem pole, maybe work as an usher, or a behind-the-scenes, backstage helper. Although they didn't need me to do the grunt work, they did let me audition. As it turned out, I landed most of the male leads. I'd never taken a single acting class, and there I was, in the Valley, fronting an entire cast, getting boiled as Hansel in Hansel and Gretel, and experiencing for the first time the application of special effects makeup as Pinocchio. (Who knew this would be the first of thousands of makeup sessions I would endure over the years?) However, Pinocchio's elongated nose was far easier to apply, not to mention it was infinitely less itchy than Freddy Krueger's prolonged makeup process.

I went to the Workshop hoping to meet girls, and despite having zero stage experience, I won role after role after role. But I shouldn't have been surprised that I took to it so quickly. Where I grew up, movies and movie people were everywhere; we'd even see Clark Gable in the local grocery store. As a kid I stood transfixed, watching cowboy stuntmen do horse falls on the RKO backlot behind my house. My uncles were television editors and allowed me to visit the sets of the hit shows they were working on. It was, as they say, in my blood.

My mom and dad weren't stage parents by any means; they themselves had nothing to do with the film industry. My father, Kent, was an executive at Lockheed Aircraft; it wasn't the most glamorous job in California, but he loved it. Before Lockheed, my father had worked for Hughes Aircraft. One morning, well before the sun had even risen, Dad went to work at Burbank Airfield. One of the hangar doors was wide-open, and parked in front of the hangar was a luxurious roadster. The car door had been left open, so Dad glanced in and was treated to a view of a gorgeous woman in a cocktail dress, curled up in the back, happily snoring away. Nonplussed, he walked into the hangar and there was Howard Hughes, one of the richest men in the world, sitting in the cockpit of one of his planes messing around with the wing-flap controls, a goofy smile plastered on his face, looking like a little kid playing with a new toy. (Personally, if I were Howard, I'd have been more interested in messing around with the girl in the limo, but that's just me.)

My mother, Janis, was a stay-at-home mom, but she'd previously led quite the adventurous life. She met Dad in Rio de Janeiro during World War II while they were both teaching the Brazilian air force how to fly their new aircraft. Mom grew up in the same neighborhood with the Little Rascals and King Kong's girlfriend, Fay Wray, and roomed with future film starlets in college. She wasn't in the movie industry, but she was definitely surrounded by it.

Mom loved good books, Dad loved jazz, and they both loved going to the movies, exploring the California coast, and making yearly trips to Santa Fe, New Mexico. Every other week, the movie theater near our house in Encino ran preview screenings of upcoming films, so twice a month Mom and Dad took me to see the latest and greatest movies that Hollywood had to offer, some of which became classics (e.g., On the Waterfront, Guns of Navarone, and Anatomy of a Murder), and some of which didn't (e.g., I don't remember the titles, because, well, they were stinkers). My parents would drag me along whether or not the content was "appropriate" for little Robbie Englund -- some of this grown-up fare intrigued, frightened, or confused the shit out of me, frankly, which undoubtedly played a role in my eventual appreciation for dark material.

Some might say I fell for acting so hard because I'm an only child, and only children crave constant attention, and what better way to get noticed than on the stage or the screen. Having known my fair share of actors who don't have siblings, I can agree that, yes, some of these people are spoiled attention-seekers; however, I've met just as many kids socially damaged by the popularity of an older brother or sister.

We had a happy home, and I was always surrounded by friends and family, always busy, always sleeping over at somebody's house, always encouraged to take advantage of everything life had to offer, always loved. (If Freddy Krueger had been brought up like me, there wouldn't have been any nightmares on Elm Street.) My family's only major issue was that for a few years before his retirement, Dad tended to work too many hours, and my mother got lonely and downed a few too many martinis; it was a very minor-league version of Revolutionary Road. Considering the kind of crap I saw happening to some of our family's friends, I couldn't complain.

My young life was good, but it improved dramatically when I suddenly acquired an older sister. Okay, she wasn't exactly a sister, but I claimed her as my own.

I was almost thirteen when my parents' goddaughter Gail's parents passed away; good godparents that they were, Mom and Dad insisted Gail come and live with us. There was understandably a palpable sense of sadness when she moved in, but as badly as I felt for Gail, I was thrilled to have her around. Gail was lovely, poised, and graceful, and even a finalist in the Miss California pageant. She treated me like a little brother and actually enjoyed it when I tagged along with her on her adventures.

One night each week, Gail taught swimming classes at the Beverly Hills High School indoor swimming pool, the same one that opens beneath Jimmy Stewart's feet in It's a Wonderful Life, and she used to take me along with her in her Chevrolet convertible. After class, we'd go to a drive-in restaurant and have hamburgers and shakes. There I was, in a canary yellow Chevy, sitting next to my beautiful semi-sister, feeling like I was just about the coolest thirteen-year-old in Los Angeles. (All that said, sometimes being in such close proximity to Gail was a bit of a challenge. Her bedroom was right next to mine, and when she'd come out of the shower wearing one of her silky baby-doll nightgowns, things got a little intense for a certain hormone-raging adolescent.)

Some nights after swim class, Gail would let me come over to her boyfriend's apartment, where the two of them would abandon me on the couch in front of the TV. These were vital formative moments for me, not because I overheard my pseudo-sister fooling around with her baseball-player, beatnik boyfriend, but rather because I was introduced to the world of late-night TV talk shows. I discovered Jack Paar, Lenny Bruce, Johnny Carson, and Don Rickles, but my late-night idol was Steve Allen...whom I had the good fortune to meet...and who, it turned out, kinda liked me.

One of Steve's friend's daughters was a member of the ensemble in that infamous Teenage Drama Workshop production of Pinocchio. After our highly successful opening-night performance, Mr. Allen came backstage to pay his respects. Naturally most everybody in the cast and crew surrounded him, peppering the poor guy with questions and autograph requests. He good-naturedly schmoozed with everybody, then eventually called out, "Okay, where's Pinocchio?"

I shyly raised my hand. "Over here."

He said, "Come with me," then took me by the elbow, pulled me back behind the scenery, and said, "Listen, fella, you're funny as hell. You're special. Keep it up."

I stared at his slicked-back hair and those big glasses and mumbled a thank-you, realizing how amazing it was to get professional approval from somebody as accomplished as Steve Allen. That sort of thing doesn't happen anymore. I'm not seeing David Letterman wander backstage at a junior high production of You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown, seek out the kid who played Linus, and tell him he's doing great work. Steve Allen said I was s...

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Robert with Alan Goldsher Englund
Editorial: Pocket Books (2009)
ISBN 10: 1845135059 ISBN 13: 9781845135058
Nuevos Tapa dura Cantidad: 2
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, Estados Unidos de America)

Descripción Pocket Books, 2009. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Never used!. Nº de ref. de la librería P111845135059

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