See five actors who could don the famous striped sweater for a Nightmare on Elm Street reboot

By Drew Mackie
August 12, 2015 09:10 PM
Getty; Everett Collection; Getty

As sure as the sun will set and teenagers will make bad decisions when being pursued by a maniac, another famous horror franchise is undergoing a reboot. Last week, it was revealed that New Line Cinema wants to start over with the Nightmare on Elm Street series.

New Line, which found such success with the original series that the studio has been dubbed “The House that Freddy Built,” already tried to reboot the series in 2010. That one-off film, which starred Jackie Earle Haley as Freddy Krueger and Rooney Mara as the teen pursued by him, made $115 million on a $35 million budget. Critics, however, dismissed this new Nightmare, and the studio has opted to try again.

And this raises a good question: Who could play Freddy Krueger in the new version? On Monday, horror movie fansite Bloody Disgusting posted a gallery of potential actors. (Spoiler: Each slide is Robert Englund, the actor who originated the role. The site, like many fans, doesn’t think anyone else should ever play the role.)

But if there must be a new Freddy, here are some off-the-cuff choices for who could don the striped sweater and custom-made gloves.

1. Benedict Cumberbatch

The Sherlock star has made a career out of playing smart, sharp-edged characters, and he’s already gotten villainous roles on his resume: Star Trek Into Darkness and the upcoming Jungle Book remake, in which he’s lending his sinewy voice to Shere Khan. Can you imagine that voice spouting Freddy’s one-liners?

2. Miles Teller

There’s an intensity to Teller’s performances that could be channeled into one of the scariest villains in horror cinema, and he has already proven his skill at playing the antagonist in Divergent. However, Englund’s take on Krueger was famous for delivering his chilling lines with a smirk, and we’re betting Teller could do that as well.

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3. Ansel Elgort

Call it a long shot, but we say Teller’s Divergent cast mate has a villain hiding somewhere inside him, even if his filmography so far is full of good-guy roles. Just think how much of a shock it would be for The Fault in Our Stars fans to see the heartthrob transformed into a monster.

4. Tom Hiddleston

In playing Loki in the three different Marvel movies, Hiddleston showed us he can create a layered, complex villain. And that’s one of the things that sets Freddy Krueger apart from the other horror movie big bads: He’s terrible, but he also has good reason to be mad at the people who wronged him. And the upcoming horror flick Crimson Peak shows us Hiddleston isn’t afraid to flirt with darkness.

5. Rooney Mara

Okay, hear us out on this one: This week, HitFix noted that a new Nightmare on Elm Street doesn’t necessarily have to adhere so closely to the original. It can get weird. As the piece points out, for example, “Hell, why not make Freddy a woman even? (Frederica?)” We’d be down. And even if Mara played the final girl in the previous reboot, she might be better suited putting some of that Girl with the Dragon Tattoo fierceness into a full-fledged villain. It might be a fun way to say, “Previous reboot? What previous reboot?”

Besides, it’s not like there’s not some precedence for she-Freddy.

The reboot is happening, one way or the other. Who do you think can hold a candle to Englund’s take on Freddy?