Horror legend Robert Englund, known for portraying Freddy Krueger in the Nightmare on Elm Street film franchsie, pitched himself to join the cast of Stranger Things Season 4.
In an interview with IGN, series creators Matt and Ross Duffer revealed what little they could about Englund's role as Victor Creel in the upcoming season, which was teased in the recently released trailer, describing his character as "pivotal" to the show. Not only that, but Englund apparently approached them to join the series himself. "The fact that he came to us in a season that’s so deeply inspired by the Nightmare series and by his performance, especially in those movies, it felt like fate," Matt said. "It felt like, 'okay, this is meant to be.'"
Netflix announced in November 2020 that Englund had joined the cast of Stranger Things in an unnamed role, though it was revealed with the release of the trailer that Englund will be playing Victor Creel. Englund is perhaps best known for his portrayal of Freddy Krueger, which he first played in the 1984 slasher film Nightmare on Elm Street. He would go on to play the supernatural serial killer in six more franchise installments, as well as Freddy vs. Jason in 2003.
Stranger Things 4 is expected to be longer than previous seasons and will be split into two parts, Volume 1 and Volume 2. Since the third season was released in 2019, the Duffer brothers explained that the cast members growing older allowed the series to lean further into its horror elements.
"When we pitched it to Netflix all those years ago, we pitched it as the kids are... The Goonies in E.T.," said Ross Duffer. "That's their storyline. And the adults are in Jaws and Close Encounters and then the teens are in Nightmare on Elm Street or Halloween. But this year, we don't have the kids. We can't do The Goonies anymore. And so, suddenly, we're leaning much harder into that horror movie territory that we love. It was fun to make that change."
As Stranger Things expands into its fourth season, the Duffers compared the upcoming installment to HBO's Game of Thrones in terms of scope. "Joyce and the Byers family have left at the end of Season 3," Matt Duffer said in a previous interview. "They are in California – we've always wanted to have that like E.T.-esque suburb aesthetic, which we finally got to do this year in the desert; and then we have Hopper in Russia; and then of course we have a group remaining in Hawkins. So we have these three storylines, are all connected and kind of interwoven together, but it’s just very different tones."
Season 4 of Stranger Things premieres on Netflix on May 27. The first three seasons are currently available to stream.