After “Evil Dead Rise” success: Statement from horror icon gives fans hope for Ash’s return

© Image/Everett Collection
© Image/Everett Collection


Actually, Bruce Campbell has finished with Ash Williams from the “Evil Dead” series. Or maybe not? In any case, he gives vague hints in a tweet.

Just recently, those responsible for “Evil Dead Rise” had every reason to celebrate: The horror film broke the magic sound barrier of over 100 million US dollars that still applies to the genre at the worldwide box office, as announced on Twitter:

This is a new record for the long-lived “Evil Dead” series, Fede Alvarez’ requel, mix of reboot and sequel, “Evil Dead” from 2013 just missed this mark at almost 99 million US dollars. This success should give the plans for further films the necessary impetus. Director Lee Cronin revealed one of them in an interview with /Film: This is how he imagines an offshoot in which a priest has to take on hundreds of Deadites, as the parasitic demons of the “Evil Dead” series are called, around the world to rescue.

Producer Bruce Campbell, who in the first three films “Tang der Teufel”, “Tanz der Teufel 2” and “Army of Darkness” as well as in the series “Ash vs Evil Dead” played the probably grooviest and most iconic horror icon Ashley Joanna “Ash” Williams embodied, promised to The A.V. Club even new films every two or three years.

Not having to wait half a lifetime until there is a new “Evil Dead” movie should already be great news for many. But what fans really want is a return of Bruce Campbell as Ash, who blows the march of the infernal armada with a chainsaw and boomstick. At the age of 64, the actor is no longer the youngest, and has actually emphasized several times that he wants to concentrate on his work as a producer behind the camera from now on. Granted, it’s a physically demanding role. And: The “Evil Dead” series needs a new (acting) coat of paint:

“It’s time for the next generation because we need young, lithe people who can put up with long, horrific hours and excessive makeup — and I’m done with that.”

However, Campbell now made himself sit up and take notice again. Here’s how he responded to The Mary Sue’s post with a sentence that made fans’ eyes shine:

This was followed by a wave of declarations of love from fans of the cult figure, asking Campbell to return at least once to give Ash a proper farewell. We remember: “Ash vs Evil Dead” was surprisingly canceled after season 3. Even if the rather open ending fits standing on its own, one would have wished for a real ending. Campbell’s decision to step down from his iconic role was certainly influenced, at least in part, by this. In the video we show you which horror highlights you can also look forward to in 2023.

“Evil Dead”: Bruce Campbell would play Ash again under this condition
In fact, Bruce Campbell has repeatedly hinted that he would only be willing to return as Ash Williams if series creator Sam Raimi also returns as director. He emphasized this once again shortly before the theatrical release of “Evil Dead Rise” in an interview with the horror magazine Fangoria:

“If Sam [Raimi] says, ‘I, Sam Raimi, will direct another Evil Dead movie,’ then I, Bruce Campbell, will consider being there.”

Raimi himself recently expressed interest in making another Evil Dead movie starring Campbell as Ash. However, the filmmaker already has two upcoming film projects as a director in the near future. So if he ever plans to direct Campbell as Ash one last time, it has to be done very soon, as Campbell always insists that he doesn’t want to be an Ash to deal with.

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