ByPeter DiDonato, writer at
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Peter DiDonato

After a long battle with brain cancer, Nightmare on Elm Street director Wes Craven has died today. Craven was 76 at the time o his death.

Craven was known as perhaps the most famous horror movie director of all time. He was most famous for directing hit slasher films like A Nightmare on Elm Street and Scream. He also directed several other cult classic horror films like The People Under the Stairs and The Serpent and the Rainbow.

Craven started his directing career in 1972 with The Last House on The Left, a horror film about the parents of a rape victim getting revenge on her attackers. The film was shot on a budget of a little more than $87,000 and was a huge success, making over $3 million (not adjusted for inflation).

Craven later revolutionized the slasher genre with A Nightmare on Elm Street, a film about a group of teenagers being stalked in their dreams by a killer named Freddy Krueger. On paper, the concept of teenagers getting killed off one by one is arguably the most cliched horror plot in the book. However, Craven added a surreal twist to his story to play with audience expectations. The film was a smash hit at the time of its release and is still considered a classic by horror fans. The character of Freddy Krueger is still one of the most acclaimed movie monsters of all time, being both threatening and darkly funny at the same time.

Throughout his lifetime, Craven received several awards. Such awards included the Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival's Lifetime Achievement Award and the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films' Life Career Award.

Craven continued to direct until 2011's Scream 4, which would end up being his final film. After Scream 4, Craven took up a permanent residence in Martha's Vineyard in 2012. He soon went back to Los Angeles due to his declining health and ended up working on the Scream television series jsut before his death.

There are currently no details on Craven's memorial service, but it's needless to say that he left a legacy in the horror genre. Craven is gone but will certainly not be forgotten.


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