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David F. Sandberg Open to Directing ‘A Nightmare On Elm Street’

David F. Sandberg Open to Directing ‘A Nightmare On Elm Street’

A potentially massive story was hiding deep within a reddit thread in which fans were discussing New Line Cinema’s Annabelle: Creation, which opened in theaters last Friday. Director David F. Sandberg, who also helmed the excellent Lights Out, participated and was asked if there was a franchise he’d like to add to or remake one day. His response raised eyebrows.

“I don’t know. I’ve been thinking about what fun franchises New Line has like A Nightmare On Elm Street and Critters. Might be fun if you took something like that in a different direction from previous installments. Like instead of remaking Nightmare you do some continuation of it in the same world kind of thing.”

It’s hard not to read into this for a few reasons. First, he says “I’ve been thinking,” which eludes to the fact that he’s already pondered the idea of getting in the director’s chair for either Critters or A Nightmare on Elm Street. Second, he’s solely discussing New Line Cinema-owned properties, which means he’s not thinking generally but in the wheelhouse that he’s working in. Third, and most notably, David Leslie Johnson is already penning the Elm Sreet reboot for the studio. Johnson is also the writer behind The Conjuring 2 and the forthcoming Conjuring 3, which means that one of the main writers in the Conjuring universe is already developing A Nightmare On Elm Street. Add all of this to the fact that Sandberg went from directing Atomic Monster and New Line’s Lights Out (Diane also reminds me of Freddy Krueger) to the widely praised Annabelle: Creation is it that crazy to think that his next stop could be Elm Street?

James Wan has created the biggest horror cinematic universe ever with The Conjuring, which has been spun off into Annabelle, The Nun, and even The Crooked Man. With Warner Bros. Pictures and New Line Cinema regaining the full rights to Friday the 13th and Jason Voorhees this coming January, it’s hard to not speculate that Wan could come in and create a brand new universe centered around both Freddy and Jason, which has been teased since Freddy’s glove made an appearance in Jason Goes to Hell. If anyone could pull it off it’s Wan. As for New Line, they have to be looking back at Freddy vs. Jason and wondering what they have to do to return their slashers to the glory days.

While we shouldn’t expect any major announcements until closer to 2018, the horror community would welcome Sandberg directing A Nightmare On Elm Street with open arms, especially since it would potentially remain canon with the Robert Englund films.

What do you think?



  • Michael Voorhees

    i’d like to see just one more to give Freddy a proper send off

  • Vinnie Vincent’s Dead Dog

    Can we stop acting like The Conjuring and all the other films within the series are some kind of godsend or something? James Wan would just turn A Nightmare on Elm Street into a series of jump scare scenes which get more and more tedious to sit through as the film goes on. After the horrible Nightmare remake. I won’t be lining up to suffer through another one.

    • James

      Absolutely. I’d rather see a director not connected to the conjuring universe working on NOES.

    • Matt Miller

      And it sucks that all the mainstream horror is taking this path of a series of long gestating jump scares and just enough character development to make it pass for “good”, without trying to make something original or smart. All this Conjuring thing is like the horror equivalent of the Marvel movies everyone wants to copy.

    • The Drucifer

      One thing you can say about Wan is he knows how to craft a fucking scene. The hypnosis scene in conjuring 2 is so well put together.

  • drmodem

    It would be so fun to see a new Nightmare film but I just don’t know how it’ll happen without it being some kind of reboot. Having said that, if Alien 5 nearly took off, why can’t this? Get England back, get Alice back. Or go the ‘Stephen King’s IT’ route and go full new/dark with an actor who can nail it (and someone tall enough!!)

    • Chip

      Could be a passing-the-torch situation. If one Dream Stalker can exist, why can’t more? It’d be a nice twist if from his pool of victims, one emerges to usurp him ad turns out to be just as bad if not worse than Freddy. We could have Robert (Bless his aging heart) get a send off and his successor in one movie.

  • Dirty Frank

    Absolutely YES to him taking on Critters or Elm Street. I still can’t believe we don’t get Elm Street movies every couple years, if ever there was a franchise they could keep going, and keep going good, it’s Elm Street. Just nix all CGI and stay practical.

    • Vinnie Vincent’s Dead Dog

      The problem is that the last time they tried we got the Nightmare equivalent of Halloween Resurrection. Forcing terrible films onto people just diminishes the brand power.

      • Dirty Frank

        That’s assuming it’s a bad film. The last was bad because they ignored too much about what made the Elm Street films popular, they cast uninteresting, forgettable and bland actors as the protagonists, and they gave Freddy too little to do while also wussing out on what would have been an interesting character choice for him. It was a dour little movie. A Freddy film can be dark as hell, scary, as much as they need it to be – but dour, that just puts people off.
        Restarting the series could very well work, but they have to make sure they don;t go down the route of the last remake.

  • Kyle Ord

    The world needs a good new nightmare on elm
    Street movie

  • Cali-Chainsaw

    I would prefer a sequel over a remake

  • Michał Bochenek

    Yes, please. With Kevin Bacon as a villain.

    • 8-bit Jason

      Yeah, I was gonna say. I think he’d be a really good Freddy.

  • I prefer a sequel than a remake
    They could use the same Freddy Krueger with the same face that we know but portrayed by another good actor.

  • venerablemonster

    I too have been considering the nightmare series and am very open to directing a new film. Give me a call New Line.

    • The Drucifer

      I’ve had my idea for 10 years, we can collaborate.

  • jasonlives1986

    Rope Robert into one more.

    Going forward new line can do their version of universe continued with Jason and freddy

  • Brad Tyler

    I’d love him to tackle ANOES. We need a new one and he is a very capable director.

  • Lady Bathory

    I wouldn’t be opposed one bit to a Nightmare sequel that’s a bit like the Conjuring franchise, stylistically. It just has to go further and do more crazy things with the dream realm and all that.

  • DJV1985

    I’m sorry but did I misread that or did you call Lights Out “excellent”? Please tell me it’s a misprint. That was a terrible film. The short film was interesting and different and could’ve been great but the film they made was terrible (in my opinion) and as for new Nightmare films, with Englund saying he wouldn’t return to the role anymore I don’t think we should have another film that continues the original films and the reboot/remake was bad in most places.

    • James

      I felt like I was the only one who didn’t like Lights Out. I loved the short, and the first 5 minutes of the film but that was it. I didn’t find it scary. Just felt poorly written, dull and had an awful ending.

      • Necro

        Yeah apparently he wants/is going to do a part 2 to correct all the negatives that were received with the film. Whatever that means.

      • DJV1985

        Don’t worry you’re not alone lol and yh I was treated like some sort of leper by certain horror fans when I said I didn’t like the film and thought the short film was better, it was like I was insulting something they created.

      • The Drucifer

        Not alone at all. Fucking hellmit was generic and that ending was borderline insulting.

    • MODOK

      Lights Out was solid. It wasn’t amazing, but it sure wasn’t Ouija or The Bye-Bye Man.

      There are only a handful of excellent horror films in any given year, and there are plenty of terrible ones. The rest are in the okay-to-good range, where you get some decent jump scares and a few memorable scenes or images. That’s where I set my bar of expectations going into a horror movie, because truly great ones are so few and far between. I think Lights Out fell safely within that category, which is good enough for a debut feature.

      • DJV1985

        I’m glad you like it but I do think that the short film was better and that I don’t think the idea was done correctly. I mean if I were writing the film I wouldn’t have made the connection between a young girl and a science experiment type thing that they did. I thought that was strange and an odd choice. I think the short film did it better because it was short and to the point – lights out scary thing lights on no scary thing but lights back off and the scary thing is closer – It just made it scarier giving to much back story (and this one in particular) just didn’t work.

        • MODOK

          I agree that Diana’s background was a bit weirdly ill-fitting. I guess that’s one of the problems in expanding a short into a movie–the need to add explanation and backstory.

          That’s why I loved It Follows…there was no attempt at explaining where the thing came from; it just was.

          • DJV1985

            I agree with the It Follows. I think if that would’ve come out back in the 90s it would’ve started a string of films (whether that’s good or bad is up in the air lol) and I like the concept of it. I think that’s what we’re missing today. Mainstream audiences who watch these films demand to know the reason for almost everything, they must know why character A is being hunted by Character B and what the secret end twist of character C is up to, they forget that to make a great horror sometimes you just have to realise that sometimes screwed up things happen.

            Just take a minute and think of all the recent horrors where they’ve shoehorned a back story to the killer/threat and then imagine if the film would’ve either removed the backstory or just left little hints, it would’ve improved a ton of films.

          • MODOK

            True. Paranormal Activity was a perfect example. In the first one, there was an unknown evil entity that just sort of appeared. Then over the course of progressively worse sequels, they explained where it came from, how it started, who it possessed before etc., etc. It ruined the original. I have little doubt Leatherface will do the same for TCM.

            One of my all-time favorite exchanges in a horror movies was in 1408:

            Mike Enslin: Oh, I’m sorry. Uh, spirit? Specter?
            Gerald Olin: No, you misunderstand. Whatever’s in 1408 is nothing like that.
            Mike Enslin: Then what is it?
            Gerald Olin: It’s an evil fucking room.

            That’s not to say backstories and origins are always bad. It may be needed depending on the circumstances. In Lights Out, there was something of a trade-off. Explaining Diana’s backstory made her less elemental and frightening, but at least it created a compelling connection to the family.

  • Nicolas Caiveau

    I hope this will come true, I’m dying for an ANOES sequel, don’t care for the remake. Still haven’t seen Annabelle 2, but Lights Out was really cool, Diana could become a new horror icon.

    • theundead

      A nightmare on elm street sequel your Kidding right?

  • dukeblues1

    As long as they ditch the humor and go dark. Humor has no place in slasher flicks

    • Necro

      Thank You Duke! Thank You! I absolutely LOATHE, fucking despise Horror/comedies! I don’t mind a funny line/antics here and there, but when it’s turned into a laugh riot (Shaun of the Dead) how can you honestly take it seriously! IMO

      • Creepshow

        Most people who wanted to watch Shaun of the Dead knew what they were getting into. I mean…it is called Shaun of the Dead. Not much to take seriously, starting with the title.

        • Necro

          Yeah maybe a bad example of what I was referring to……..or maybe not.

          • Creepshow

            I can’t speak for everyone, but I went to see it for a laugh (with zombies) and got what I was looking for.

    • Blade4693

      Comedy has been a part of A Nightmare On Elm St. for years though. It’s not the main focus but it’s definitely a part of the franchise.

      • MODOK

        For real. Freddy never would’ve become the icon he is without all the puns and campiness they started introducing in the third movie. He didn’t end up with a TV show, 976-number and metric shit-ton of merchandise until they made him more of a dark-comedy figure.

        That’s not to say the humor was a good change, but who knows if he’d only be a second-rate slasher without it.

      • theundead

        A nightmare on elm street wasn’t comedyin the first place sweetie

  • Carl Chrystan

    It’s been done, pal! How’s about something like…

    The Burning
    Deadly Friend
    Just Before Dawn
    Return of the Living Dead
    The Beyond
    In the Mouth of Madness
    The Fury
    Holocaust 2000
    The Video Dead
    Demon Knight
    The Kindred
    Island of Death
    Anthropophagus the Beast
    City of the Living Dead
    Cannibal Ferox
    Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things
    The Living Dead at the Manchester Morgue
    Ilsa: She Wolf of the SS
    City of the Living Dead
    Pet Semetary
    Rats: Night of Terror
    The Hidden

    • Necro

      I can get behind all of those except for two: ‘In the Mouth of Madness’ and ‘Demon Knight’. In my opinion those two are fine the way they are. Now ‘C.H.U.D.’ and ‘Deadly Friend’ are at the top of my list as well. They definitely need a touch up.

    • Hack Snyder

      The Return of the Living Dead and Martin should be left alone, I don’t think you could improve upon those masterpieces.

  • Brett Lovejoy

    ‘Lights Out’ was one GARBAGE movie, surely people didn’t think it was “excellent”? Talk about overhyped and generic, and now he’s getting attached to a bunch more horror movies, it seems. What a shame the state of horror is in today.

    • The chicken man

      Lights out was a lot of fun, but I’m not a horror snob.

    • Papa_spoosh

      This year we have the well reviewed new Annabelle, get out which was fantastic, IT which looks perfect, chucky, saw, mother!… there’s a lot of good happening in horror these days

      • Brett Lovejoy

        I’m beyond excited for IT! Jigsaw looks surprisingly good, too. Not watching anything for mother!, seems like the less you know going in the better.

    • Wes Nichols

      Lights out was a lot of fun at the theaters. I saw it twice and both times the audiences really enjoyed it. A lot of vocal screams during, and smiles after.

  • Jimmy Ray

    Bring back Robert England. Also love Critters.

    • Jason Misunas

      I’m sure they would if they could but they can’t

      • Tony Harley

        Why not? Aside from Robert’s age there’s no reason not to. That’s why we have stuntman and CGI to replace their faces. They just have to care enough to put the money up for that.

    • theundead

      Definitely not happening

  • Francesco Falciani

    Do a sequel.. bring back Jason too pleaseeeeew

  • Ocelot006 .

    That is pretty damn fucking vague.

    “I’ve been thinking about what fun franchises New Line has”.

  • Papa_spoosh

    “The excellent Lights Out”….? I haven’t seen but I didn’t hear much good. Worth a watch?

  • Grimphantom

    Stop spreading bullcrap, Lights Out wasn’t “excellent” not a bad movie but not something on the level of being excellent.

    He might do it but if he didn’t had much vision with Lights Out, i doubt he can be creative on Nightmare on Elm Street.

  • Sky Ferreira

    Or… we could just not?

  • Pluto Hiller

    Go with ‘Critters’. Scott Grimes is perfectly able to reprise his role. NOT a remake, but a legitimate sequel with a larger budget. That could be cool. I do like his idea of the Elm Street universe being used. Reference Freddy, but have another supernatural killer of some sort.

  • Bloodspatta

    New Line are sitting on 2 massive franchises with Elm St and Friday. Now that they’ve got all of this talent involved with The Conjuring universe they’d be crazy not to utilize these people to give us more Freddy and Jason films.

  • Flu-Like Symptoms

    Though generally not a fan of prequels, the only other Nightmare film I’d be intrigued to see is that Springwood Slasher pitch we were hearing about for a year or so after FvsJ came out. Englund has recently stated that is the only incarnation of the character he’d still be open to playing. It would be interesting to see more of his take on pre-Freddy.

  • Frank Bautista

    I’m up for a soft-reboot, set in the ORIGINAL continuity and world, but a new movie with new characters! Sign me up!

    • Saturn

      How about in the same continuity, but Freddy has been long dead, and the demons in him have possessed someone new – with a new M.O.

  • Adam Clifton

    First, you’d have to get past the HUGE hurdle of having someone other than Robert Englund playing the largely recognisable Freddy Krueger.

    • Tony Harley

      Or just have him and a stuntman that’ll have his face covered in post?

      • Adam Clifton

        The character of Freddy is more than a stuntman performance. RE made that character his own with his own style. It’s going to ring hollow like that 2010 NOES remake

  • quantumbleep

    Wiz Kraven’s Nü Nightmare

  • Tony Harley

    Or why not give A Nightmare on Elm Street the IT (2017) treatment? A movie with a concept like ANOES deserves such grand production and care.

  • Evan3

    I’d far prefer to put the nightmare to bed for good. I think we’ve explored everything there is with this character. I don’t think there’s any need or market for a continuation, reboot, remake, whatever.

    • AdamX

      Pre-Burned Freddy, Freddy depowered in the dreamworld or forced to have to regain them in the real world, Perhaps an equal in the dreamworld. Maybe not all super ideas but there are a few notches left in the belt.

      • Evan3

        But that’s just it. As you said, “not all super ideas.” So why bother? Let’s get some fresh, new, super ideas on the screen, not a series of diminishing returns.

  • Mike Lawrence

    I’d love to see what these guys could do with Freddy. The franchise needs a revival. You can’t just let an icon like Krueger fade away.

    • Evan3

      Buy it on DVD and it will never fade away.

      • Mike Lawrence

        Lol this is true

  • John Connor

    I would like to write and direct a remake of A Nightmare On Elm Street.

    Oh…I’m not part of the club?

  • Trav

    Did I miss something? I thought the rights to Friday The 13th were still being held up in court. When was it announced New Line Cinema was getting the Friday The 13th rights back?

  • Werewolf

    I’ve got an idea. How about doing something…ORIGINAL?


    • Ocelot006 .

      Yeh. Like Wish Upon. Or The Bye Bye Man.

      • Werewolf

        NO! Not like those. Something actually good!

        • Saturn

          How easy do you think it is to do something original and good? If it were that simple we’d be amazed with originality on a monthly basis.
          Movie making is a business – and common sense dictates that a well known brand will attract more people than something lesser known and original. Sadly.

          • Werewolf

            I know it isn’t easy, but they don’t even try. They make everything based on trends and algorithms. They’re too lazy to even THINK.

            Which is why we’ve got the current full-on crap factory we have today.

          • Saturn

            I agree that most of the time they don’t bother trying, this is why I feel it would be nice if a group of horror director/sfx guys got together to form a company that would invest perhaps 1-2 million dollars in giving first time directors a chance to do something “original” – something that the costs aren’t going to be too prohibitive – where the gamble could pay off.

  • Shane o mac

    If it takes new line regaining rights to finally getting friday the 13th back in theatres i am all for it…….now if dimension doesn’t screw up halloween the future looks awesome

    • Trav

      I agree with you on that. But as I asked below, when was it agreed that New Line would regain the rights? Last i heard, The rights to Friday The 13th were held up in courts, and either Victor Miller, or Paramount would get rights to Friday The 13th, and the Jason character. When was it decided New Line would get the rights again? It’s kinda sad, because I was excited to see what Paramount had in store for a new Friday The 13th movie.

      Also, I don’t think Dimension owns the rights to Halloween anymore.

      • Shane o mac

        I’m just going by the article for F13 and you right about Halloween. It’s blumhouse and someone else who got the rights now (I think)

        • Trav

          Ok, so I did a bit of research and found out more about the situation. New Line sold the rights back to Paramount back in 2013. Part of that agreement though, was that Paramount had to release a new movie in the Friday The 13th franchise within 5 years, or the rights go back to New Line in 2018. What that means for Victor Miller trying to get the rights, I have no idea.

          • Shane o mac

            He (Miller) just trying to get some money

  • Quadriple

    Not without Robert Englund, not again, please…

    • Trav

      To be fair, Jack Earle Haley’s portrayal of Freddy wasn’t terrible. Nobody was going to successfully replace Englund, but I actually think Haley did a decent job as Freddy.

      • Quadriple

        I think the opposite, Englund’s Freddy has something else for me that I couldn’t exactly explain. I don’t want anyone else to play Freddy, that just ruins the character for me.

  • Маразм Клинический

    New Line can suck my dick.

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