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Heather Langenkamp

Heather Langenkamp

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Also Known As: Heather Langenkamp Anderson Died:
Born: July 17, 1964 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA Profession: actor, photographer, screenwriter, newspaper copy person

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

This attractive, youthful leading lady of film and TV effectively conveys strength and intelligence while compelling audience sympathy. Langenkamp gained some small measure of fame and a place in genre film history playing Nancy Thompson, the determined and resourceful heroine of Wes Craven's "Nightmare on Elm Street" series (beginning in 1984), battling dream monster Freddy Krueger. Though she had starred in one previous feature--playing a rural, unwed teenaged mother in the little-seen "Nickel Mountain" (1983)--horror auteur Craven proved central to her slight film career. Langenkamp starred in the Craven co-scripted "A Nightmare on Elm Street III: Dream Warriors" (1987), played the victim in Craven's "Shocker" (1989) and starred as herself in "Wes Craven's New Nightmare" (1994). The Oklahoma-born Langenkamp was a copy girl for the Tulsa TRIBUNE when she learned of auditions for a film being lensed in the area. She debuted as an extra in Francis Ford Coppola's "The Outsiders" and landed a speaking bit in his immediate follow-up "Rumble Fish" (both 1983). By 1985, she was appearing in series guest spots, TV-movies, and youth-oriented programs like "Have You Tried Talking to Patty?" (a 1986 "CBS...

This attractive, youthful leading lady of film and TV effectively conveys strength and intelligence while compelling audience sympathy. Langenkamp gained some small measure of fame and a place in genre film history playing Nancy Thompson, the determined and resourceful heroine of Wes Craven's "Nightmare on Elm Street" series (beginning in 1984), battling dream monster Freddy Krueger. Though she had starred in one previous feature--playing a rural, unwed teenaged mother in the little-seen "Nickel Mountain" (1983)--horror auteur Craven proved central to her slight film career. Langenkamp starred in the Craven co-scripted "A Nightmare on Elm Street III: Dream Warriors" (1987), played the victim in Craven's "Shocker" (1989) and starred as herself in "Wes Craven's New Nightmare" (1994).

The Oklahoma-born Langenkamp was a copy girl for the Tulsa TRIBUNE when she learned of auditions for a film being lensed in the area. She debuted as an extra in Francis Ford Coppola's "The Outsiders" and landed a speaking bit in his immediate follow-up "Rumble Fish" (both 1983). By 1985, she was appearing in series guest spots, TV-movies, and youth-oriented programs like "Have You Tried Talking to Patty?" (a 1986 "CBS Schoolbreak Special") and "Can a Guy Say No?" (a 1986 "ABC Afterschool Special"). Langenkamp became a sitcom regular on "Just the Ten of Us" (ABC's spin-off of "Growing Pains," 1988-90) playing Marie, the model elder daughter of a large Catholic family.

Finding the transition between juvenile and adult roles difficult, Langenkamp took time off to complete her college education and concentrate on marriage and child-rearing. Craven lured her back to films in 1994, playing herself in the well-received postmodern exercise "Wes Craven's New Nightmare." Renewed by the experience, Langenkamp starred as ice princess Nancy Kerrigan in the trashy telepic "Tonya and Nancy: The Inside Story" (NBC, 1994). Since then, she has had the occasional guest role on TV, but more or less has concentrated on motherhood and her own chewing gum business.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Home (2016)
4.
 Tonya and Nancy: The Inside Story (1994) Nancy Kerrigan
5.
 Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994) Herself
6.
 Shocker (1989) Victim
8.
 Nickel Mountain (1985) Callie Wells
9.
 Nightmare on Elm Street, A (1984) Nancy Thompson
10.
 Passions (1984) Beth Kennerly
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1985:
Co-starred in "Suburban Beat", a busted pilot about four concerned housewives who fight crime
1983:
Played first substantial feature role, starring in the romantic drama "Nickel Mountain"
1983:
Saw an ad seeking film extras while working as a copy girl for the <i>Tulsa Tribune</i> (date approximate)
2001:
Began operating Malibu Gum Co., which packages chewing gum with trading cards of local surfing personalities; shoots photographs of the surfers
1983:
Cast as an extra in Francis Ford Coppola's "The Outsiders"
1983:
Enrolled in Stanford University
1987:
Reprised the role of Nancy Thompson in "A Nightmare on Elm Street III: Dream Warriors"
1984:
TV-movie debut, "Passions", playing the daughter of Richard Crenna and Joanne Woodward
:
Spent her high school years in Washington, DC where her father worked for President Carter in the Department of Energy
1994:
Starred as ice skater Nancy Kerrigan in the TV-movie, "Tonya and Nancy: The Inside Story"
1988:
Cast as a regular on the ABC family sitcom, "Just the Ten of Us", a spin-off from "Growing Pains"
1983:
Contacted by producer Fred Roos ("The Outsiders", "Rumble Fish") during Christmas break; urged to move to L.A. and get an agent (date approximate)
1983:
Landed a small (uncredited) speaking part in Coppola's "Rumble Fish"
1994:
Played herself as the star of "Wes Craven's New Nightmare"
1984:
Starred as Nancy Thompson in Wes Craven's "A Nightmare on Elm Street"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

National Cathedral High School: Washington, Washington D.C. -
Holland Hall: Tulsa, Oklahoma -
Stanford University: Stanford, California - 1989

Notes

"Since the original "Nightmare on Elm Street", the actress worked steadily ... without ever regaining the widespread notoriety of her debut. 'It's sad when your first job is so wonderful and the rest of the way down the line you have to struggle to find that again,' she says. 'I'd made one feature before "A Nightmare on Elm Street", but it was a low-budget thing that was never released. So I knew going in that the first "Nightmare" would be my real debut. I was pretty nervous but Wes put me at ease. He was an easy person to get along with, and I was completely convinced of his sincerity at all times. I can't really say that about the third film.'"

--From "Craven's Nightmare: Elm Street Actress" by Dale Kutzera, Imag-Movies, Fall 1994.

"Craven had initially contacted her about reprising her role in "Dream Warriors", which he was writing at the time, but a disagreement with New Line caused him to be replaced by Chuck Russell, who toned down the Nancy character from an independent fighter to a nearly emotionless woman. 'Chuck wanted to present my character as a cool, strong personality,' she says. 'I can relate to the idea, but on film it came across too dispassionate. One critic referred to my performance as callow, and I agree. Her emotional depth wasn't as great as I would have liked. Every time I tried to make her bolder, Chuck would rein me in. That was his choice, and I had to respect his wishes, as much as I didn't want to at times.'"

--From "Craven's Nightmare: Elm Street Actress" by Dale Kutzera, Imag-Movies, Fall 1994.

Langenkamp received numerous threatening letters from an obsessed fan after the cancellation of "Just the Ten of Us" (ABC, 1988-90). Craven worked this incident into the screenplay of "Wes Craven's New Nightmare" as a major subplot.

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Alan Pascua. Musician. Born in 1952; married in 1984; divorced in 1986.
husband:
Dave LeRoy Anderson. Makeup effects artist. Won Oscars for "The Nutty Professor" and "Men in Black"; met in 1989; married in 1990.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Dobie Langenkamp. Worked for US President Jimmy Carter; divorced from Langenkamp's mother in 1987.
mother:
Mary Alice Langenkamp. Divorced from Langenkamp's father in 1987.
brother:
Matthew Langenkamp. Financier. Born c. 1967; works in Hong Kong.
brother:
Daniel Langenkamp. Born c. 1969; as of 2001 was a graduate student matriculating in Pakistan.
sister:
Lucy Langenkamp. Born c. 1975; as of 2001 was studying art in Tibet.
son:
Atticus Anderson. Born on May 24, 1991.
daughter:
Isabelle Eve Anderson. Born on December 24, 1994.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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