Actor Bruce Campbell has become synonymous with Ash Williams, the Deadite-slaying star of Sam Raimi's Evil Dead franchise; it's a fact Campbell himself jokingly bemoaned in 2007's meta horror-comedy My Name is Bruce. Still, after 3 feature films and 3 seasons of Starz's now-cancelled Ash vs Evil Dead, Campbell broke legions of horror fans' hearts by stating emphatically that he's retired from the franchise. While it was recently announced that Ash, along with his team of "Ghost Beaters" from the TV series, will regroup digitally in an upcoming Evil Dead-themed video game, the actor still believes there's a chance for more films and/or TV shows-just not with him.
So, what exactly does Campbell have in mind for a potential Evil Dead franchise reboot? Here's what he told ComicBook.com:
"You have Ash's daughter, Brandy [played by Arielle Carver-O'Neill]. She provides the lineage. Ray [Santiago] is a shaman now, you know as Pablo, and Kelly [played by Dana DeLorenzo] is just a full-on Lucy Lawless type badass who's got vengeance in her eyes. So, that's enough for me, three's a good number. I would also continue the movies with Mia, with Jane Levy, because she's awesome."
I'm especially enamored with Campbell's idea of making more Evil Dead movies featuring Jane Levy as Mia, the star of 2013's reboot, directed by the incomparable Fede Alvarez-and I'm not the only one. Alvarez floated the idea by his fans when, in the aftermath of Ash vs Evil Dead's cancellation, he asked his Twitter followers which they'd rather see: Evil Dead Part 2 or Don't Breathe Part 2? Evil Dead won the survey by a hefty margin. While it was all hypothetical and, to our knowledge, no plans have been set into motion for another Alvarez/Levy reunion, it shows the director's willingness to revisit the property.
It's important to remember just how popular 2013's Evil Dead was, both financially and critically. The film grossed over $97M in the US alone from a budget of $17M. And even though horror fans have an almost knee-jerk aversion when it comes to remakes of classic properties, it was a huge hit with genre aficionados. I remember being stunned following a Midnight Screening of Alvarez's Evil Dead, amazed at how it stayed true to Raimi's original vision while simultaneously wrenching familiar tropes and plotlines in exciting new directions. Dialing back the franchise's dark humor in favor of extreme gore and violence was a brave decision that paid off in spades. The use of practice effects with a bare minimum of CGI struck a powerful chord with many digitally-jaded moviegoers. The introduction of addiction as a plot motivator was both innovative and timely, emerging during the early years of America's ongoing opioid crisis. In many ways, one has to wonder why Ghost House and TriStar Pictures haven't already attempted to retain Alvarez and Levy for another Evil Dead film? Am I the only one why feels certain it would it be a guaranteed hit?
It's worth noting that Campbell wouldn't even be opposed to passing the torch for another actor to play Ash, but I don't that's really something anyone wants to see. You can't replace the King! Thanks to ComicBook.com for bringing us the interview.