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How Nightmare On Elm Street Influenced Jordan Peele’s Us Soundtrack

Lupita Nyong'o crying in Us

Horror movies have been in a bit of a renaissance lately, with Jordan Peele's Get Out serving as the example of all the genre is capable of. Earning the new director an Academy Award, Get Out was a critical and financial success, while also being a significant moment in film history. All eyes are on what Peele will bring to theaters next, with the first glimpse of his upcoming horror flick Us arriving in the form of a trailer on Christmas Day.

The trailer for Us is tense and horrifying, showing yet another fascinating idea to come from Jordan Peele's creative mind. The trailer's backdrop is set to the song "I Got 5 On It" by Luniz. While starting off as a charming scene shared with the family in the car, the track becomes more insidious as Us falls into chaos. Now Peele has described why he chose that song, and how it actually relates to beloved horror franchise A Nightmare on Elm Street.

That song, it came pretty simple, I'm making a movie in Northern California, that's a bay area hip-hop classic and I wanted to explore this very relatable journey of being a parent [and] maybe some of the songs you listened to back in the day aren't appropriate for your kids. So that was one level, and another part was, I love songs that have a great feeling but also have a haunting element to them and I feel like the beat in that song has this inherent cryptic energy, almost reminiscent of the Nightmare on Elm Street soundtrack. So those were the ideas that that song hit the bullseye on for me, and also, it's just a dope track.

Jordan Peele has already shown that he's a director with a very specific vision, one that emanates from every frame of Get Out. It looks like Us has approached with the same level of care and specificity, including the film's soundtrack. "I Got 5 On It" has never been more horrifying, and it's a song that's abel to adapt with what's being shown onscreen.

In his conversation with EW, Jordan Peele also briefly mentioned how "I Got 5 On It" has some musical moments that feel reminiscent of the Nightmare on Elm Street soundtrack. While these aren't two songs that casual fans would have paired, there is some commonality in the haunting chimes of both songs. As a reference, you can hear the Nightmare on Elm Street soundtrack below:

While the two genres of music are nothing alike, the haunting bells are similar in both songs. And considering how much Jordan Peele loves the horror genre, this connection may have been the tipping point to including "I Got 5 On It" in Us, and the film's trailer.

Us will arrive in theaters on March 15th, 2019. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your trips to the movies in the New Year.

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.