Frankly, the news that a screenwriter had been hired to pen the latest installment in a horror franchise would not normally merit much attention.(Other than from the writer's agent and immediate family.) But when we're talking Wesley Strick and A Nightmare on Elm Street, my curiosity soared.
New Line Cinema has hired Strick to create their new version of Nightmare, according to The Hollywood Reporter. One of his first credits was as co-writer of Arachnophobia, Frank Marshall's clever creature feature, followed by Martin Scorsese's heavy-handed remake of Cape Fear, and later Mike Nichols' post-modern Wolf. His other credits include Final Analysis, The Saint, The Glass House and Doom.
While it's always tricky to assign credit or blame based solely on screen credits, I think it's safe to say that Strick has a distinct track record: complex psychological tension, sarcastic humor, and mucho macho boom boom (to coin a phrase for his uber-male characters). I'm not saying that all of these elements succeed in every movie he's had a hand in writing, but I am hopeful that Strick can come up with a fresh twist on Freddy Krueger.
The new Nightmare will retain the high school setting and "delve deeper in the psychology of nightmares and Krueger himself. The plan is to have a dark tone." If the plan is also to forget about a PG-13 rating, so much the better. New Line aims to release the film in time for the 25th anniversary of the original -- which would be November 2009.