The look of Freddy Krueger is down to one man... effects guy David B. Miller, one of the many unsung heroes who brought A Nightmare on Elm Street to life. These horror heroes and heroines are now celebrated in Tommy Hutson's book about the legendary horror, Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy (based on the documentary of the same name).
Bloody Disgusting obtained some photos from this epic, sold-out book which show the initial designs for Freddy Krueger's face. This face...
The photos from David B. Miller's planning stages around 1983, when the first Freddy make-up designs were conceived. The final, clinching inspiration for the chosen Freddy design was... PIZZA. Seriously. Miller said:
The final design for Freddy that went through, and this is a true story, is pepperoni pizza.
Here are some early images of Freddy Krueger designs.
Here's the composite broken down a little:
Freddy also could have had a different hat; a flat 'paperboy' cap rather than his fedora! And a vest version of his striped sweater!
Interestingly enough, Miller's Freddy inspiration also came from a movie he was working on at the same time as A Nightmare on Elm Street; early '80s horror Night of the Comet. Miller said:
I did a zombie cop makeup in Night of the Comet. Wes saw that picture and said, ‘This is very close to what I want Freddy to look like.'
Looking at a picture of said zombie cop, it's not hard to see the similarity!
The zombie cop's manner is a little similar to Freddy too...