Despite fans’ initial fears that Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead remake would tree-rape their memories of Sam Raimi’s original cult classic films, most early reports are that it’s bloody good, emphasis on the bloody, with a sequel already in the works, imaginatively titled Evil Dead 2. Soon thereafter we got greeted with the news that Raimi might be returning to his original franchise with Evil Dead 4 aka Army of Darkness 2, which will be a direct sequel to the third film. The original third film not a new third film, that is. Got it?
So to avoid audience confusion, how are these filmmakers going to keep these two versions of the same franchise independent? Simple: they won’t.
While at WonderCon this past weekend, Alverez and original trilogy star Bruce Campbell – who is also co-producing Alvarez’s remake along with Raimi – hinted that that “remake” tag might not be entirely accurate.
Now I haven’t seen the new Evil Dead yet, due to a small problem of it only having been shown thus far to people on another continent, but I have seen some on the interwebs how some folks who have seen it state that there’s nothing in the new flick to indicate that it definitely cannot take place in the same universe and timeline as the original, and that may be exactly the angle that a supposed unification would take.
The duo revealed that there was a vague plan – completely reliant on the box office performances of Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness 2 - to have the leads of the respective films, Mia and Ash, team up in a 7th film. Alvarez revealed that this has always been his “ultimate dream” while Campbell smilingly added that “Seven is a nice a number” for it to happen.
Now, if you happened to have tuned into low-fi espionage drama Burn Notice any time in the last couple of years, you would have noticed that Campbell is no longer the trim hero he once was, now looking like he may have eaten all the undead. But knowing Campbell and the tongue in cheek tone of the later films, I wouldn’t be surprised if one-chainsaw-handed hero Ash’s new rotund frame wasn’t worked into the story somehow, instead of suddenly having the 54-year old actor kill himself trying to get Deadite-slaying fit again. That being said, this could be a pretty cool development.