Freddy Krueger has dispatched victims in a number of alarming and inventive ways over the years. Unlike reality based killers like Jason Voorhees and Michael Myers, there’s really no limit to what Freddy can do. He’s not only in your dreams, he’s in your head, turning all of your worst fears against you. He externalizes internal turmoil and anxiety to destroy his victims in the most upsetting and personal ways possible. He’s turned a girl afraid of bugs into a cockroach and turned a lonely puppeteer into a human marionette. Whatever you can think, he can do. Or rather, whatever the budget will allow he can do.
Sometimes, screenwriters vastly overestimate what a movie will be able to showcase on the screen. They come up with something that the budget simply won’t allow. In some cases, writers even—no pun intended—dreamed up death sequences that couldn’t be accomplished with the technology of the time. Let’s take a look at five bizarre Freddy Krueger kills that, for one reason or another, never made it to the screen.
Freddy Kills Taryn With His Thing-Like Torso
Remember Taryn’s death scene in A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors? It’s one of the best of that movie, even one of the best of the entire franchise. Taryn is a former addict who envisions herself as an empowered punk rocker. She’s constantly trying to avoid her past with needles, even when some obnoxious hospital staff members try to force her back into her old habits, she holds strong. Which makes it all the more devastating when Freddy forces her to OD by turning his fingers into needles. Originally, though, that wasn’t supposed to be Taryn’s fate. In Wes Craven and Bruce Wagner’s absolutely bonkers original draft, Taryn was eaten by Freddy. Mimicking Carpenter’s The Thing, Freddy’s chest opens up, revealing hundreds of razor sharp teeth that then proceed to devour her almost whole. In fact, that whole script had a fetish for body horror and physical mutation, and as a result most of the death scenes were head-scratchingly strange.
There’s really no delicate way to say it. Again, this is from the original draft for Dream Warriors by Craven and Wagner. Kincaid is probably the most iconic character from the third entry, aside from Freddy himself. Fans love him for his abrasive yet somehow charming attitude. And in the actual film, he survives. Sadly he was not so lucky in the original script. Most of the major story beats play out like they do on the screen, except on a much, much bigger scale. Everything is just totally surreal, heightened reality, sticking to the “everything plus the kitchen sink” style that Craven really wanted this sequel to take. In the movie, we have the third act fight across the dreamspace which is somewhat intact here. One major exception being that Kincaid spends most of this time stuck in a wall. Somehow he gets caught between the waking world and the dream world, so he is physically stuck and can’t go anywhere. Freddy takes this opportunity to give Kincaid a colonoscopy via his signature weapon, all while spouting some pretty Deliverance-esque lines.
In the original John Skipp and Craig Spector script for A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child, the character Yvonne—who survives the finished movie—is very different. First of all, her name is Jen and she shares only the loosest connections with the actual character in the film. Instead of swimming being her thing as it was in the movie, this time it’s art. She’s a sculptor, that’s pretty much the most character depth that we get from her. In a move that’s completely taken from Beetlejuice, all of Jen’s scultpures come to life and attack her. She is assaulted by a full-size Claymation Freddy, a metal sculpture that transforms into a giant glove, and then is finally killed by said glove cutting the propane and blowing up her house which is actually anticlimactic, all things considered.
Freddy Kills a Bulimic Girl by Forcing Her to Binge
This death is actually a lot better than what we got in the finished film. It comes from Skipp and Spector’s original script for The Dream Child. The character of Greta is a wannabe model and actress who also randomly has a small doll. In a strange dinner party scene, she is killed by being forced to eat her doll, which is filled with human flesh, in front of everyone. The original script goes much deeper into her anxieties, as her character—Ginger in that draft—is actually starting out as a model and actress and has to deal with being exploited on what looks like a regular basis. It creates a lot of image problems for her, the way it does for a whole lot of girls in that industry especially those who are just getting into it and think they have to be perfect by some unknown standards in order to succeed. Ginger is explicitly referred to as bulimic early in the script. If this was put on screen, it would have been one of the darkest moments in the whole series. Where the finished movie gives us goofy Freddy in a chef’s hat, initially it was going to be much closer to the gluttony scene in Seven.
It’s no secret that Freddy vs. Jason took forever to find its way to the screen and that in that time there were numerous, numerous drafts. Many of them went to absolutely absurd places. Many were centered around a Freddy-worshiping cult, in which cult leader Dominic Necros was the main villain instead of either Freddy or Jason. Many of the writers that did decide to go deeper into the two titular characters decided it would be poignant to tie their backstories together. They did this by making Freddy into a Camp Crystal Lake counselor who molested Jason and then tossed him into the lake so that he wouldn’t tell anyone. Luckily, this really unnecessary look into their mutual past didn’t make its way to the final draft, but references are made when Freddy invades Jason’s dream in the movie and attempts to kill flashback Jason by re-drowning him.