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The Return of 'The Evil Dead' (Feb.05) by Robg.

After all these years, could this finally be the time for a huge return of 'The Evil Dead'? It appears so.

A few months back, Sam Raimi and Robert Tapert had announced that their Ghosthouse Productions company would be producing a remake of their cult classic film 'The Evil Dead'. The news was recieved with mixed feelings amongst fans, as we have been clamoring for another Bruce Campbell outting against the Evil Dead for years now, and with a remake in the works, it's very unlikely that he'd return unless in a cameo role. This also shot down all the rumors of a 'Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash' movie. Apperantly, Sam Raimi had other things in mind for the character of Ash and held off on committing to that monster mashup. (In all honesty, it's probably for the best.)

Back in December of 2004, we had asked the original ladies of the Evil Dead to comment on their thoughts of an Evil Dead remake, and they told Icons Of Fright, "Well, the boys are finally listening to us and the fans!!! We have tried and tried to convince Sam, Bruce, and Rob for years to try and attempt to make a horror film as good as 'The Evil Dead', you know, a remake, a repeat, a reprise of... one of the world's greatest horror films of all time."

Since the initial announcment, things have been quiet, up until last weeks press junkets for 'Boogeyman'. While the remake is still searching for a director to the 'Evil Dead' remake, word came out that filmmaker Dante Tomaselli, writer/director of 'Desecration', 'HORROR' & the upcoming 'Satan's Playground' would really like to give it a shot. "I saw the original EVIL DEAD in 1981 when I was 11, and it seriously changed my life." he told Fangoria. "It opened me up to how limitless, creatively, a low-budget horror movie could be. The film is like a magic trick or an out-of-body-experience, and every time I watch it, I am treated to the most spectacular horror movie in existence!"

Dante definitely has our vote considering he knows and genuienly loves the original source material. And he even has the confidence & support of the original Evil Dead's Ellen Sandweiss, who will also appear in Dante's 'Satan's Playground'. She says, "I'd love to see Dante Tomaselli direct an EVIL DEAD remake. Working with him on SATAN'S PLAYGROUND was a wonderful experience, plus his vision as a director and his lifelong devotion to horror make him an ideal candidate. Are you listening, Rob and Sam? My vote is for Dante."

The big rumor at the moment is that Sam would really like director
Park Chan-Wook (Old Boy) to re-envision 'The Evil Dead'. After all, importing Japanese horror seems to be big these days. Ghosthouse Productions has already converted 'Ju-On' into last year's hit 'The Grudge' with Sarah Michelle Gellar. (Psst... that was rated PG-13.)

Another big issue among fans is... who will be the new Ash!? Rumors have been circluated for weeks now for Justin Theroux (last seen in Mulholland Drive). And another odd rumor was that American Pie's Stifler, Sean William Scott had already been cast. Bloody Disgusting were able to shed some light into the matter with last week's interview. When asked about Sean William Scott, Sam & Rob told Bloody Disgusting"Who is that? I don't think I've ever heard of him".

Oddly enough, this rumor was started by a sometime contributor to our very own site here, Jay Alvino. "I was just watching 'The Rundown' and I think he's hilarious and he's good at psychical stuff. I just think he'd be a cool Ash, so I went on a few message boards to say so. And now, Sam & Rob are commenting on it, which I think is even more hilarious."

Well, along with dispelling that casting rumor (although they didn't deny him as a potential cast member), Bloody Disgusting's interview revealed some news that the fans have waited to hear for so long. There WILL be an 'Evil Dead 4'. Sam tells Bloody Disgusting, "There will be an Evil Dead 4, and there will ALSO be an Evil Dead Remake. The remake will be produced by Ghost House pictures and it will star a new cast and a completely new director. The point of Ghost House is that we want to bring new directors to Hollywood and give them a chance to make a good horror film. I love the original 'Dawn of the Dead', and I also really enjoyed the new 'Dawn of the Dead'. I mean, they are both really great horror films. I want to let somebody with a fresh vision bring The Evil Dead to a new generation and a new audience with a different vision." The interview also confirms that the Evil Dead remake will actually feature elements from both Evil Dead 1 and Evil Dead 2. Raimi himself will be directing 'Evil Dead 4' with Bruce Campbell returning as Ash. Raimi added "This is the project I really want to make. The remake can belong to someone else, but part 4 will be a continuation of the original".

Sam and Robert also spoke to Coming Soon.net and told them that their 'Evil Dead 4' might have to go by the title of 'Army Of Darkness 2'!?! Rob Tapert told them, "You might have to call it 'Army of Darkness 2' oddly enough because only the fans really knew that that was Evil Dead 3. Even the people at Universal Home Video called us up one time and said, "We want to do a direct to video Army of Darkness 2 because that's a really good title." We said, "No, that's really Evil Dead 3." They said, "Oh, well, we don't care about that Evil Dead stuff but the Army of Darkness was really good." They're totally confused".

Now here's another spin on what was previously reported. In the coming soon interview, they debunked ALL the Ash rumors and said the character of Ash will only belong & be played by Bruce Campbell. "The only thing that Bruce has asked is that nobody is called Ash. He wants to sit on that name".

So, what are the fact's so far?

Sam Raimi & Rob Tapert will be producing an Evil Dead remake through their Ghosthouse Productions company. It will feature an all new cast & new characters, and it will combine elements of both 'The Evil Dead' and 'Evil Dead 2: Dead By Dawn'. No director is set as of yet, but rumors point to either Japanese filmmaker
Park Chan-Wook or independant filmmaker Dante Tomaselli.

Sam Raimi will also direct a sequel to his Evil Dead trilogy, 'Evil Dead 4'. Although it may go under the title of 'Army Of Darkness 2'. (It might be odd if both 'The Evil Dead' and 'Evil Dead 4' were out around the same time.) Bruce Campbell will return with a fistfull of boomstick as the one and only Ash.

And now, the waiting game begins.

But who knows? Before you know it, you'll all be in theaters hearing the threats to "shallow your souls!!!" -robg.

UPDATE: 5/24/05 -
This isn't new news, but it's cool regardless. Mile High Comics The Beat spoke with Bruce Campbell a few weeks back on the status of 'Evil Dead 4', the remake and 'Bubba Ho-Tep 2'. Here's some quotes:

On the 'Evil Dead' remake: "We're going to do the remake and none of us feel bad about it because it's our own remake. We're not getting some 1970's TV show out of Aaron Spelling's file draw and making a movie. This is our own movie. So we're gonna update it for a new generation with new effects and tell a new story with a new cast. We'll be pulling the strings from behind. And hopefully they'll like it. I don't know when it will come about. It'll take a while to find a director and to write it and get it all set but it's gonna be made."

On 'Evil Dead 4': "Everybody wants to make it. I do, Sam does, Rob Tapert does, so that's not an issue. The only issue is that this guy happens to have stumbled into a phenomenon. So until that dies down he won't have time. And really... there's no more mystery. That's it. There's nothing beyond that. It really is that simple. To tell the guy who made Spider-man to stop so he can make Evil Dead 4... it doesn't compute."

On 'Bubba Ho-tep 2': "It's being actively pursued by two companies. That will probably happen. Don't know when. There will be a bit of prequel and bit of a sequel at the same time. There may be some parallel story elements."

Read the entire interview at the comiccon site.

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