There was a time when horror and comedy were the peanut butter and chocolate that no one dared to mix. That ended decisively with the release of Sam Raimi's debut film, 1981's The Evil Dead which, along with its sequel, 1987's Evil Dead II, created a self-aware universe that balanced buckets of gore, smirks, slapstick, knowing callbacks and some totally sweet zombie kills. Key to making this delicate balance was the film's star, Raimi's childhood friend Bruce Campbell, who never seemed like he was taking anything too seriously, even when he was swinging a chainsaw around like a badass.
The Evil Dead series launched the career of Campbell, an A-Level talent always most comfortable rolling around in the B-Movie sandbox. His career has included fun, pulp TV shows (Burn Notice, Xena: Warrior Princess and The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr.), cult films (like the Elvis Battles the Undead romp Bubba Ho-Tep) appearances in mainstream hits (the Spider-Man movies, Congo and The Hudsucker Proxy) and a few SciFi channel originals. But it's Evil Dead's Ash Williams, last seen in 1992's Army of Darkness (save for a brief cameo in the 2013 Evil Dead remake) that made him a hero to the ComicCon crowd. Campbell and Raimi have reunited for Starz' Ash vs. Evil Dead, which premieres on Halloween and does not, Campbell assures his fans, tone down a thing. He's also playing Ronald Reagan on Fargo this Fall, because the man's hustle does not stop. We got on the phone with Campbell to talk about Ashing it up again and why he's not nearly as typecast as you think.
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