First of all, Ken, we would like you to really thank you for this interview. Each interview we get with any of you, the cast and crew of the films, is a present for us.
Before speaking about nightmares, please, tell us a bit about you. Could you tell us about your beginning as an actor? IMDB says that your first project was in 1985, in ‘The twilight zone’, with just eighteen years old. We love this series, Rod Serling was great.
Actually, my first file was “Say Yes,” with Jonathan Winters. Later, I did “The Twilight Zone.” I was born in a small Georgia town in the South, from Atlanta, Georgia – in the USA. I moved to Los Angeles and became a Security Guard at Universal Studios, where I met the late-great, Alfred Hitchcock. While there, I took acting classes and was discovered by the producer of “Say Yes,” and she put me in her film.
Ken's earlier works
You have just co-direct 'Story of the Seven Maids from Stockbridge', a film that is now on post-production. Where do you find yourself more comfortable: in front or behind cameras? Are you going to continue directing, or you’re going to alternate acting and directing?
That is a mistake that I have to get IMDB to correct. It’s not a film; it’s a documentary for a reading of the scriptnovel I wrote. But I love both, and I cannot chose one over the other. They both are very important in my life and love doing both of them.
'Seven Maids from Stockbridge'
You are a really prolific person: actor, director, and writer so. In 2010, you wrote a horror scriptnovel called "Latch of the Shadow". Did you take any elements of your experience with the ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ movies to create the villain?
Yes, I did, but I also took a touch of others as well. I wanted to put some of the old fashion horror back in a screenplay.
'Latch of the Shadow', the horror script-novel by Ken
Also, part of the benefits of your book’s sales is intended to help young people, that you run from your website http://www.gbc-givingbackcorporation.com/ . Have you found support by fans, or actors from the movies, in that personal project of yours?
Yes, but I must say with pride, that the horror community have been one of my biggest supporters. All over world, people send me messages saying how proud they are of what I try to do. I know how it feels to want to make something out of yourself and just don’t have the littlest things to make it happen. That why I hope that everyone support me when I walk the L. A. Marathon in March. It would mean so much too so many, and 100% goes to help those who dream to make something out of themselves, but don’t always have it. Maybe I can help a few of them, and when they see someone “giving back” to them, they will give back, and that will reach all around the world.
'Giving Back Corporation', Ken's caring project
Let’s speak about the Nightmares. How were you contacted to join ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street 3’? Had you seen the two previous movies then?
No, I had not seen any of the “Nightmare on Elm Street” films before my agent called me for the audition. And I didn’t want to once I got the part, because I wanted to bring my own style to the role of Kincaid.
Kincaid, in 'A Nightmare on Elm Street 3'
You were part of the probably two best sequels of the saga. In general terms, how do you feel about have participate on such a big series?
Great, it was really great. I also did not have any idea that those movies were going to be so large. To this day, I am honored, and I will continue to say, I, nor any of us, would be if it wasn’t for fans like you. So, thank you, thank you, thank you. I really mean that.
Ken, in a convention
Despite we like it, it’s obvious that lots of people didn’t like ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street 2’ when released. Do you remember how was fans’ reception of ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street 3’?
Because I didn’t see part 2 until I had completed part 3, the reaction all over were great. I remember it was the #1 movie for three weeks in a roll. People everywhere were talking about it.
Kincaid, in the padded cell
We love ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street 3’. We think that the little “turn” towards fantasy feels great to the saga. That movie is like a rollercoaster, relentlessly. Also, Freddy starts showing that black sense of humor that became so popular. Did you have the feeling, while filming, that you were changing the tone of the series?
Wow, I have never been asked a question like that before. I was grateful that the director (Chuck Russell) allowed me to make the words more like what a Black guy would say without destroying the work of the writer. I knew that being the first Black actor to survive a horror film was going to be a big thing. But I did not know the affect it was going to have until it was out and many of the inner city youth (of all races) started to tell me what Kincaid meant to them. – great question, by the way.
During the film, it’s crucial the friendship, the fellowship between the Dream Warriors. Did you have such a close relationship the actors while shooting? Are you still in contact with Robert, Patricia, Rodney…?
I have been blessed to have done a lot of work; on film, tv, and stage. I can really say working with the cast and crew of the Nightmare movies has been one of the best. I have no unhappy feelings about working with anyone. I have not seen Patricia since part 3, but the rest of them, we see each other from time to time, and it’s like we were hanging out the day before. We are a very special family, we respect each other, and there is much love.
The Dream Warriors, a big family
What did you have in common then with Kincaid, your character? There was any similarity between Ken Sagoes and Roland Kincaid?
Well, I have to say - because I have been a stand-up comic for a while, the smart and quick talk was similar. I think verbally, they both could go head to head with Freddy.
Still good times, in 'A Nightmare on Elm Street 3'
How was Chuck Russell as a director? He is reputed to be a bit sharp…
Mr. Russell was one of the best directors I’ve worked with. In so many ways you can say he should take credit for us coming together as a family. Before we started shooting we all met in Westwood to just talk about the film and each of our characters.
'A Nightmare on Elm Street 3' group reunited
Was Patricia Arquette such an adorable girl, like she seemed to us? For us, she was very close to the perfect girl…
And I would have to agree, not only was close to perfect as an actress, but also as a friend. We haven’t seen each other since the filming of part 3, but she still remains dear to my heart as one of the first acting friends in Hollywood.
The girl of our dreams...
Let’s continue with ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street 4’. Personally, this movie is very special for me, probably my favorite of the series, along with the first one. Before the good reception of both public and critics, did you feel the pressure, the necessity of doing things well one more time?
Yes. Because I had been honored to create a role that the writer had created on paper. From one writer to another, that really means a lot. The role of Kincaid was representing a lot of people for many reasons. I had received many letters from all over the world about Kincaid. I had made him a part of me, so if he was to go out, I wanted him to go out letting Freddy know that if they were on equal grounds, he would “fuck him up,” plan and simple. When Kincaid’s last words were, “I’ll see you in Hell.” I really wish there would have been another movie where Kincaid would have done that. I think the fans would have loved it.
It’s clear that, when approaching ‘Nightmare 4’, writers thought that it was necessary to introduce new characters, such as Alice (Lisa Wilcox), Rick (Andras Jones), Debbie (Brooke Theiss), Sheila (Toy Newkirk)… All good characters, undoubtedly, we love those characters. But we also think that we saw very little from the characters of the third movie, and it was so easy to become fond of them… Especially Kincaid, who dies right in the beginning. Did you feel that your character was killed too soon? Did you feel bothered about that?
Like you and many, many others, they were hoping that the three of us (Kincaid, Rodney, and Kristen – now was played beautifully by Tuesday Knight) would have lasted much longer in part 4. Trust me, when I tell you, I surely wanted too. So I had accepted the fact because we read the script before shooting. So What Rodney and I tried to do, was give some of the finest acting that we could, so we could leave those coming behind us a path to follow – and they did. I don’t think there was a weak actor in the film.
Kincaid, Joey and Kristen
We have found that there was a preliminary script for the sixth movie where Kincaid returned, as a member of the “Dream Police” (the Power Cop, to be exact) that guarded the door between dream world and real world. Did you get a phone call from the studio? Would you have liked to reprise this role?
Wow, are you serious? Really? This is the first I’ve ever heard of that. So I guess that also answers the question as to if I received a phone call. But if I had, I’m sure I would have.
The alternate script for 'A Nightmare 6'
We don’t know if you are a fan of the ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ series, but we have decided to ask this question to any person that we interview. You, the interviewee, will decide whether to answer or not the question: what would be your favorite order of the movies of the Elm Street saga, from the best to the worst? I’ll tell you mine, in confidence: 1 , 4 , 3 , 2 , 7 , Vs. , 5 , 6 , Remake.
Now, that question can get a brother in trouble. So I would only answer up to three movies, they are in this order; 1, 3, 4.
So let me say thank you to all in Spain, I wish so much to be a visitor in your Country someday. I also want to thank all who send me messages from facebook to fan mail. It does really means a lot. Also, I do ask that you do support me when when I make the walk to give-back to the youth. - One last thing, There are 26 miles in a Marathon, and I’m going to name each mile after a villian. But mile 26 will be named after my Nightmare nemesis, Freddy himself, so I will have to walk pass 25 villains to get to him. In October, you can be a part in helping me name each mile. Send your suggestions to me on facebook. I AM ASKING EVERYONE TO PLEDGE JUST .25 cents a mile. You will also be able to go online and see where I am. Please pledge, tell your friends to make a pledge.
That's all. I imagine that, reading this interview, you have found what kind of man Ken is. If any of yours want to help him, here's a link for Giving Back Corporation
The Sagoes Company