AUCKLAND, New Zealand (AP) — More than 30 years after the low-budget horror movie "The Evil Dead" was released and became a cult classic, Ash is back and battling deadites.
"Ash vs Evil Dead," premieres Halloween on cable network Starz. Bruce Campbell reprises his role as Ash Williams. Campbell's fellow original filmmakers Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert are also involved in the television production, which is a mix of horror and comedy.
The Associated Press talked with some of the stars and producers during filming near Auckland, New Zealand. Here's what they had to say:
— Bruce Campbell, actor and producer:
"Well, mostly what we've enjoyed as filmmakers is being unrestricted in content. There's a lot of networks that require all kinds of rules and regulations of what you can't say, what you can show, what you can't show and that gets very debilitating. As an artist, we like to just say what we want to say, do what you want to do in an unrestricted fashion, and Starz is finally allowing us to do that."
"Yeah, it's very bizarre that these guys that I've known — Sam I've known since high school and Rob I met shortly thereafter — but it's kind of amazing that this many years later, we're still alive, we're still in the business, we're still working together, we're still talking to each other. So, it's a very special situation. There aren't many directors like Sam or producers like Rob, and that's been the funnest part — is getting back with the guys that you know so well. You don't have to really rework this, you don't have to beat it to death, you understand each other a lot better."
— Lucy Lawless, on her character Ruby:
"Well, I always like to keep it spicy, no matter whether she's a good girl who has got a nasty kink in her character, or a bad girl who is kind of likable. She's going to be mixed up, she's going to be a mixed up bag of goods is Ruby, but she's going to be a lot of fun."
— Rob Tapert, producer, on the character Ash:
"TV was really the right format to tell this particular story of this character. So, in the first season we will have spent more time with the character of Ash than we have through the previous three movies. To Sam and I, in particular, Bruce was the show and so to do something in this format, that allows us to concentrate on Bruce, was really the way to go."
— Ray Santiago, on his character Pablo:
"He is the heart and the good conscience of the show, of the trio, and he's the eyes and the ears of the audience. So, you root for him and the team through what he does, because you see yourself in him. I think it's really nice that they're allowing and that they've made the decision to make Bruce's sidekick Latino, because I don't think that we have any Latino superheroes out there."
— Jill Marie Jones, actor:
"The 'Evil Dead' fans have been amazing. Social media is good gauge, you can really kind of see. And, for the most part, everybody has been really positive, excited — I think they've been waiting for a long time."
— Dana DeLorenzo, actor:
"Obviously the target audience is the loyal fans that have already been established, but also I think it's going to find a new audience — people who have never been exposed to it. Because, if you're someone who just likes good television and likes to be entertained; if you're too afraid of the horror, close your eyes and you'll still be laughing. If you're someone who wants more of the horror, you'll be laughing in between, and you might even cry a little bit — I'm just going to put that out there — you might even get a little sad sometimes.
"These are real people, these are real characters and I think because they're so relatable on so many different levels and they all have their own demons that they're dealing with and going through their own transition, I feel like there's someone in there for everyone, and you're going to be along for the ride, and how great is that?"