1. Jackie Earle Haley (probably) failed his audition for the original 1984 film.
If you haven’t heard the story of how Johnny Depp obtained his very first film role in A Nightmare on Elm Street, I’ll fill you in. The story goes that Depp, who wasn’t all that interested in becoming an actor, accompanied a friend to an audition for the film. When director Wes Craven saw Depp’s Hollywood potential, he immediately cast him as one of the movie’s main characters.
In recent years, rumors have surfaced that this friend who Depp tagged along with to the auditions was none other than Jackie Earle Haley. Haley has since labeled this story as nothing more than a rumor, but suggested that it was very possible that he did audition for the film and may have sat next to Depp in the waiting room, which could have started that misconception.
In any case, whether he showed up with Depp or by himself, it appears that Haley had most likely auditioned for the original film and was passed over. I don’t believe that he’d simply “forget” auditioning for a movie that blew up and turned out to be one of the most well-known of all horror movies of all time, and perhaps he just doesn’t like to discuss that embarrassing situation as he’d failed the audition.
Despite missing out on the original film, Haley would go on to become Freddy Krueger himself— and while the film itself was horrid, there’s something just inherently interesting about that.