Exclusive: Brad Fuller Clears the Air on A Nightmare on Elm Street, Talks New Direction for Platinum Dunes
As a lifelong Freddy girl, there is one particular Platinum Dunes remake that I have been paying especially close attention to over the last few years since it was initially announced -- A Nightmare on Elm Street.
It’s also no secret that right along with me, there are thousands of horror fans who are waiting with the very same anticipation, although many of them have already taken to the Net to voice their thoughts on what they’ve seen so far. And honestly, it hasn’t been pretty.
With its release date just about a month away, this Dread Central writer thought it was time to follow up with Brad Fuller, one half of the producing team behind Platinum Dunes, to find out how he’s feeling about Nightmare’s impending release and give him a chance to answer all those Internet naysayers who have been quite vocal about their re-imagining of one of horror’s most beloved franchises as well as talk to us about Platinum Dunes’ plans for the future.
You would think that with the release for Nightmare being so close, Fuller would finally be sleeping a little easier these days. However, work on the film is ongoing for the producer, and he’s still feeling a bit under the gun.
Fuller said, “Honestly, we are sweating it out with Nightmare, probably more than any of the other films we’ve ever done. We made it our mission to do everything in our power to deliver with Nightmare on Elm Street.”
The climate of the current horror industry is that if Platinum Dunes wasn’t going to be the one to do the remake Nightmare, someone else would have. The landscape is filled with upcoming titles, many being remakes. I asked Fuller to talk about the added pressure that comes with remaking horror films and if that pressure is something that drives him creatively.
“Honestly, its hard remaking films that people feel so strongly about,” explained Fuller. “What we’ve come to realize is that you just can never replace those feelings you have the first time you see the original Nightmare or the original Friday the 13th. Platinum Dunes is not trying to replace those memories for anyone because we have them, too, as fans.”
“Fans tend to forget that horror remakes have been happening forever with titles like Dracula, The Mummy, or even The Wolf Man. We’re just a new generation of people remaking films, and we are the ones carrying the torch this time around,” Fuller added.
Fuller, along with his producing partner Andrew Form, has always been keenly aware of what the online communities have said over the years in relation to their past projects. I asked the producer about how much of what they read bears any weight on their decision-making process as they work on their films.
“Look, there is nothing I can do to appease the haters, and so all I can do is focus on my films and let them stand on their own merits. I don’t care if someone sees the movie, and they genuinely don’t like it. What really frustrates me is when people hate something they haven’t even seen yet, like they are with Nightmare. I think fans should at least give it a chance before they immediately dismiss it,” discussed Fuller.
With a few trailers and an onslaught of publicity stills that have now made the online rounds, fans have begun to weigh in with their speculations surrounding what will make the cut from the original film into the remake. Fuller spoke about Platinum Dunes’ approach in blending some of the old with the new.
Fuller said, “Since we’re horror fans, and fans especially of the Nightmare franchise, that limited our ability to just throw everything out the window and start fresh with our re-envisioning of Nightmare. There are so many landmark moments in the first one that we needed to make sure we keep in ours but still have enough in there that will keep the audience guessing.”
A few months ago many cast and crew members were called back during the holidays for a week of re-shoots. Fuller spoke about what fueled the decision to return to Elm Street.
“Almost every movie these days has re-shoots so it is not an indication of poor quality of what we had from the original shoot on our part,” explained Fuller. “We were just missing some things that we wanted. Of course we wish we had gotten everything the first time we shot, but with the benefit of today’s technology, you can learn things as you are editing and see where you are missing stuff so that helps you decide what you need.”
“Plus, we’ve had some test screenings, which I really like so we can see what works for an actual audience as they are experiencing it. For me test screenings are a helpful tool for the filmmaking process because these movies are meant for audiences to enjoy, not just for us guys who are making them,” Fuller added.
With the delivery date of A Nightmare on Elm Street rapidly approaching, I asked Fuller what the future held for Platinum Dunes. Horror fans, you’ll be surprised at the response.
Fuller said, “We still aren’t sure what’s going to happen with the Friday the 13th sequel. Since Chainsaw is now in the hands of Twisted, that means we’re done with Leatherface now. The studio has decided to move forward and look for new types of material, which is how we got involved with Existence 2.0. I love action-y type material, and these graphic novels had that feel to them. Our writers are currently working on the script for that project.”
“We’ve made the decision to not pursue any new horror projects beyond what we’re planning for the upcoming remake of The Monster Squad. For that film we will be aging the Monster Squad up a bit so that it’s relatable to today’s audiences, but it will still very much be in the same spirit as the original. And, of course, The Wolfman will still have nards,” Fuller added.
Good to know that some things remain sacred, including The Wolfman’s nards!
Special thank you to Brad Fuller for taking the time to speak with Dread Central.
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