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Hollywood Monster: A Walk Down Elm Street with the Man of Your Dreams Hardcover – October 13, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 298 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; First Edition edition (October 13, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439150486
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439150481
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #755,982 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The actor behind A Nightmare on Elm Street's Freddy Krueger recounts his early years in theater and Hollywood before hitting it big as the razor-fingered killer. Intent on pursuing a stage career, California native Englund went to Cal State and Michigan's Academy of Dramatic Arts, where he studied classical theater. After being inspired by Martin Scorsese's debut film, Boxcar Bertha, Englund headed to Hollywood and soon landed small roles alongside stars like Henry Fonda, Burt Reynolds and Sally Field. But it wasn't until Wes Craven offered the role of Freddy Krueger, a sadistic murderer who haunted victims' dreams, that Englund broke into cult stardom. He recalls in vivid detail the hundreds of hours spent in the makeup chair for the film and its six sequels, most recently 2004's hit Freddy vs. Jason, where Krueger is resurrected from hell and battles Jason Voorhees from the Friday the 13th franchise. Englund also appeared in the acclaimed 1984 miniseries V and 1995's The Mangler, from Tobe Hooper, director of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. While readers who didn't grow up with the Elm Street films may be a bit lost, Englund's memoir will appeal to those who still can't shake Freddy from their nightmares.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"Monstrously entertaining! Robert proves as gifted and versatile on the page as on the screen. Irreverent, uproarious, revealing!" -- Mark Hamill, star of the original Star Wars trilogy

"If you've ever wondered what goes into the creation of a screen icon like Freddy, you should read this book. With wit and candor, Robert Englund gives you the recipe: talent mixed with life lived to the full, served up with boundless energy and a rich imagination seasoned with unswerving respect for his audience, and a passionate dedication to his craft as an actor." -- Doug Bradley, star of Clive Barker's Hellraiser movies

" 'Six degrees of Kevin Bacon?' Ha! Try 'Three Degrees of Robert Englund!' The Boris Karloff of our generation has worked with just about everybody and lived to tell the nightmare! Great read!" -- Dee Snider, host of Fangoria Radio on Sirius/XM, front man for Twisted Sister

"Reading Robert Englund's journey through the ups and downs of a Hollywood career is a fun, funny, and eye-opening blast. His life has been no 'nightmare,' but rather an entertaining romp! Take a read...if you dare!" -- Star Price, award-winning producer of Penn & Teller: Bullshit!

"[Robert] saw the role, and the script as a whole, pretty much as I saw it, as some kind of black comedy, and as the telling of a story about iconic figures locked in the eternal human struggle between good and evil -- a modern myth, disguised as a scare-the-pants-off-you horror movie. Robert got it. And he got the role." -- Wes Craven, in his introduction to Hollywood Monster

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Customer Reviews

This is great fun and a quick read.
Chad Kenneth Bell
I highly recommend this book to not only folks who are fans of Englund but also anyone who just wants to read a good autobiography.
katphoti
I love Robert Englund and I had a great time remembering the '80s and '90s as he recounts filming the Nightmare movies.
Jerry Hart

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Chad Kenneth Bell on December 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Coming in at 298 pages the book is a quick read. But this hasn't been a quick life for Robert Englund. The anecdotes on things that have occurred in his life tend to lack some details; however, they do range from the star studded to the hilarious. For a man who is currently considered an amazing character actor in horror films, he is possibly one of the most recognizable stars in the genre since Vincent Price. The book starts off with his young acting career (to get girls) and follows his life through to the top of becoming the horror icon Freddy Krueger.

This is great fun and a quick read. The appendix contains some fun filled favorite lists: music, movies, and kills. The lists depict Englund's tastes and well Freddy's morsals.

Hollywood Monster is a must read biography for actors, horror fans, and folks wanting to experience a large part of cinema history. Who knew the scariest man in cinema is the nicest, humblest, and sincerest man in hollywood for 4 decades.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Todd Jones on January 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My only complaint about this book is that it is such a quick and enjoyable read that I finished it almost as soon as I got it lol. Being an actor with a particular interest in the horror genre, I had been waiting for this book for a long time. I was not disappointed. Englund kept a perfect balance in writing about his pre and post Freddy Krueger life. He obviously realized what a person reading a Robert Englund bio would want to read about and did not load the book with a bunch of boring crap from his life, which was very nice after trudging through page after page of golf stories in Christopher Lee's Lord Of Misrule (yeah, I said it). For my fellow actors reading this, it's a nice insight into an actor's life who has achieved what most of us are trying to achieve. Englund seems to have totally embraced being a horror icon, and he fully acknowledges how fortunate he's been. Another interesting point for me as an actor is that he also states several times that even as famous as he is, he is still to this day a "working stiff" and will usually take any job offered to him. Food for thought for those of you just getting into the business with stars in your eyes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DR. PRETORIUS on November 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The name Robert Englund will always be synonymous with the name Freddy Krueger. Some actors might see that as a hinderance, but Englund embraces it, and it's a breath of fresh air that your not hearing the same incessant Hollywood whining about "being typecast". The man's a hard-working character actor and happened to land himself into one of the most iconic roles of a lifetime. The book is a page-turner in that it's quick-paced, quick-witted and damn interesting. Being a huge horror aficionado, buying this book was a given, but I have to admit I found myself completely more drawn in and fascinated with his early career in Hollywood. Englund recounts so many brushes with Hollywood royalty in his rise to stardom that it starts to feel almost Forrest Gumpish (I mean that as a compliment). His drive to become an actor and how hard he worked to get where he is today is inspiring. As for the 'Nightmare' stuff: Most of the Freddy anecdotes contained here can be found in various interviews on the countless DVD's released surrounding the series, so that aspect was a bit of a familiar letdown only in that I wish there was MORE. Englund will take you through the productions of all of the 'Nightmare' movies, but at a break-neck pace. Maybe the guy is sick of talking about Krueger. I wouldn't blame him. I just wanted more detail, and how he really felt about some of the films, and how he reacted when they were lambasted by critics/fans... and vice versa. Where the fans will really benefit is hearing of Englund's personal relationships in the business: like his friendship with F/X wizard Kevin Yagher, and his admiration for filmmaker Tobe Hooper. I found some of Englund's "Freddy jokes" planted throughout the pages to be just as cheesy as some of the latter films in that series. Overall, I recommend the book for further insight into a really genuine, hard-working actor. I only wish there were more pages to fill with his fascinating stories of making movies.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Vanessa on July 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I LOVED this book! I'm a huge nightmare/robert englund fan so I just knew I had to have this book. I was so interested in learning about everything that Robert has experienced throughout his life. His stories about frightening people on and off set of the nightmare movies are hilarious. I also loved how before each chapter, he talked about a nightmare he's had. This is just a fantastic book for anyone wanting to know more about the real freddy krueger. The only reason I gave it 4 stars instead of 5 is because I finished it in about 5 hours and I was so upset when I finished it. I just wanted to keep reading!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Spillers on November 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you are even a passing fan of the Nightmare series, you would do well to read this book. Great stories about not just the Nightmare franchise, but playing Willie on the original "V" series, working with Henry Fonda, and funny asides about Gary Busey. I do wish Mr. Englund could have elaborated more on some of his stories. This is nitpicking though, as what he does write is a lot of fun. Get your finger-knives on this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Barry on January 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Lon Chaney. Vincent Price. Boris Karloff. Bela Lugosi. Lon Chaney, Jr. Peter Cushing. Christopher Lee. Donald Pleasance. Robert Englund. Horror/monster movie stars. It's a small club. No doubt each one of them have led rich, interesting lives. The biggest star of this field of the last 30 years or so is, without a doubt, Robert Englund. Now, Englund shares with us his life, his story, his career, and a certain character by the name of Freddy Krueger. Read on....

After reading this book, you will find that Englund's life and career has been no nightmare. In fact, Englund seems to of been blessed with a wonderful existence. Sometimes a blue collar, hard working character actor like himself is much better to be than a leading man Hollywood star. Things just seem to be so much more interesting. He talks of working with the likes of Burt Reynolds, Sally Field, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Henry Fonda, and others, and writes like he is taking you on a backstage journey through trying to make it as an actor and what goes on behind the scenes. For anyone that knows how Englund is, the book, like himself, is written in the same jovial, interesting, ball of energy way that he is himself in interviews and what others always say about him. So much of the book you can actually hear him saying and talking about, and it makes for a fun, enjoyable read. While there is no real dirt or gossip, or horrible childhood memories, the book is filled with wonderful Hollywood talk and taking you inside the life of a working actor. While Englund has done a lot of work over the years, he will always be known as Freddy Krueger. The one and only!
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