Robert Englund Talks How He Helped Mark Hamill Secure the Role of a Lifetime

freddy-kreuger-robert-englundSome of you may have read this story in the past. For those who haven’t, here’s a fresh interview with actor Robert Englund, who once again discussed his audition for Han Solo in the original Star Wars film and his little nudge that helped his roommate Mark Hamill to audition for it as well!



Rohan W. from recently had the chance to talk with ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ star Robert Englund at Brisbane’s Oz Comic Con. Englund, best known for his iconic role as the serial killer Freddy Krueger in the horror film, spoke about his audition for a role in Star Wars and how he might have had a hand in Mark Hamill’s choice of a lifetime.

“Well, here’s what happened,” he tells me. “I auditioned for the surfer in Apocalypse Now, and I was too old. I really thought I was going to nail it.” He said. “I didn’t get the part, and as I started to leave, they said, ‘Wait, Robert, they’re doing something across the hall with George Lucas’. And I perked right up when I heard ‘George Lucas’, because I love American Graffiti. It’s a perfect movie. The perfect film about my generation. I love it. So my eyes lit up and I went across the hall.




He continues, explaining:

“They wanted an older Han Solo at that point. They wanted him to be like that cool uncle who just comes around once a year, you know? Luke Skywalker’s cool uncle who smokes a joint with him or something. At least that’s what they were talking about in the office with me.” He said. “They just took Polaroids of me and that was it. I could tell I was too young.” he said.


After that, the actor had a few drinks and eventually drove home to his flat in the hills.




But wait! The story soon gets really interesting, and possibly rubber stamps the soon to be Freddy Krueger as the person who may have had a hand in creating the Star Wars we all know and love. Englund talks about his then TV star friend Mark Hamill, who was always hanging out on his couch watching sitcom’s.

“At that time, Mark Hamill was always on my couch,” Englund remembers. “He was a TV star. He was filming a TV series across the street; I think it was called The Texas Wheelers, with Gary Busey. So he was always at my place, and I knew he was home because his cowboy boots were out front. He always left his boots outside. He said. “So there he was, halfway through a six-pack, watching The Mary Tyler Moore Show. I went in and I said to him, ‘Look at these sides, I think you’re right for this, man. This character is like a space prince, and it’s George Lucas!’




This is where Englund may have played a hand in bringing the Luke Skywalker we all know and love to life.

“So I said to him, ‘Mark, you’ve got to do this, it’s George Lucas!’ I wasn’t even really pushing the space bit, I was just saying, ‘Wow, what if you got to be in a George Lucas movie, Mark? You’re the kind of actor he loves!’ So he got on the phone to his agent and the rest is history.


Englund jokingly attempts to set the record straight on why he turned down the role of a lifetime.

“That’s the true story. But the internet wants to make it like, you know, I turned down the part of Luke Skywalker for Mark Hamill. I would never have turned it down!”


You can check out his complete interview with the actor over at



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25 thoughts on “Robert Englund Talks How He Helped Mark Hamill Secure the Role of a Lifetime

  • September 20, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    Robert is the man, loved him in V, and my favorite horror character. “Welcome to prime time, bitch!”

    • September 20, 2016 at 11:25 pm

      “Boy, Rick, he sure says “bitch” a lot!”

  • September 20, 2016 at 9:35 pm

    I think I may have heard this story before, but its a nice refresher.

  • September 20, 2016 at 9:51 pm

    Englund as Han Solo, up there with Stallone as Axel Foley.

    Doesn’t bare thinking about.

    • September 20, 2016 at 11:26 pm

      WhY couldn’t we…haveseen…CHristoferr WALken as….hAn…SOlo?

      Would have been EPIC.

      • September 21, 2016 at 12:12 am

        Dennis Hopper as Yoda.

        • September 21, 2016 at 8:00 am

          Ronald Reagan as Obi-Wan.

      • September 21, 2016 at 7:58 am

        Because, he would have had to have carried that uncomfortable chunk of metal up his….oh sorry, wrong movie…

        • September 21, 2016 at 8:33 am

          could have been the alternate hiding spot for the death star plans… 😉

          • September 21, 2016 at 9:13 am

            Rebellion medic: “Uh, does anybody wanna get those plans? Anybody? Ok, Plan B – we’ll just let the Empire blow up a bunch of planets, it’s cool.”

    • September 20, 2016 at 11:34 pm

      I wonder how Al Pacino or Burt Reynold would’ve been…

      • September 21, 2016 at 8:12 am

        Whoo-hah (Pacino). Hah-hah (Reynolds). Terrible, both of them. Reynolds as Han Solo would have been asking where the gear shift was on the Falcon was and then asking where the Cannonball Run system was located. But I know you’re joking – so am I.

        • September 21, 2016 at 10:51 am

          Hah, good one. Honestly, after Ford Charles Heston would’ve been the best. Just image ,,You maniacs, you blew it up!” after the Alderaan scene…

          • September 21, 2016 at 11:29 pm

            “You’ll have to pry my ship from my COLD. DEAD. HANDS!!!!!!” Then he would have shot first. Over and over and over and over and over again until his blaster went ‘click’.

    • September 21, 2016 at 1:21 am

      kurt russell would have been interesting.

      • September 21, 2016 at 8:05 am

        Honestly, when I consider the options – this probably would have been the best alternate for Harrison Ford. He’s a little shorter, gives off more of an intense, smart-ass vibe than an apathetic anti-hero vibe, but I’ve always liked Russell. But I don’t think Star Wars would have been quite as popular if Ford wasn’t in it. There’s a reason he went on to be a major superstar…

        • September 21, 2016 at 8:31 am

          pretty much my line of thinking. as a second choice i think kurt has both the charm and wit to play the role, but yeah ford’s i don’t give a blank attitude was perfect. i do think the film would have been a smash hit either way, but that character probably wouldn’t have been as iconic.

    • September 21, 2016 at 1:35 am

      Kirk Douglas in his prime would’ve made a great Han Solo, but they’d have needed to film Star Wars about a decade earlier I guess as I think he’d have been late 50’s when ANH was filmed. Mel Gibson now would make a good Palpatine. Sorry, going off-topic now.

      • September 21, 2016 at 7:56 am

        Mel Gibson as Palpatine? WTF? I need to sit down…

        • September 21, 2016 at 7:34 pm

          Arise, Darth Mel. Gibson’s about loopy enough to play any maniacal villain.

  • September 21, 2016 at 1:23 am

    the idea of mark getting drunk while watching mary tyler moore is so great.

  • September 21, 2016 at 4:50 am

    I love that Luke was downing a six pack while watching TV.

    • September 21, 2016 at 8:14 am

      What? That’s what I call “Tuesday night.”

  • September 21, 2016 at 8:56 am

    What movie is that picture on the left from – the one with him in what looks like a grey overcoat? Looks way cooler than that stupid green and red Christmas sweater he always wore (that I can remember) in the movies. Freddie was always my favorite 80s slasher villain because at least he was funny. He was cheesy as all hell – but he brought the humor at least. Jason’s, Michael Meyer’s, and Leatherface’s severity got old after awhile – yes we get it, you seem to be able to be everywhere at once, inhumanly strong, and no one will ever be able to completely kill you. It worked at first but as the sequels went on – BORING. At least Freddie’s excuse was that he existed in the dream world, not the real world. Though even Freddie got stale after a while, but at least he could speak and offer something to laugh about. Now I’m going to sleep on my waterbed with my headphones on listening to classic 80s tunes. Nothing bad could happen, right?

    • September 21, 2016 at 10:39 am

      i want to say its from new nightmare, but don’t quote me on it.

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