Welcome to Script to Pieces, a recurring feature at Wicked Horror where we look at the best, most interesting and at times most unbelievable horror movies that never happened. Sometimes these will be productions that never came together at all, others, original incarnations that were completely different from what we wound up with. Each should be fascinating in its own way, because the stories of movies that never see the light of day can sometimes be even more interesting than the stories of those that do. This installment looks at Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead 2.
The Evil Dead remake was a success that I’m not sure anyone saw coming. We had been consistently burned by new interpretations of major classics. At that point, we were still getting over the sting of the Elm Street remake. The trend was already dying down and people were skeptical. Everyone wanted to see a new movie with Raimi at the helm, starring Bruce Campbell as Ash. They didn’t want…this.
But they got it anyway, and most wound up enjoying the ride. Evil Dead 2013 is gory, insanely intense and while it tells the same basic story as the source material, it boasts many pleasant surprises, twists and spins on the old formula as well. It’s a good remake. Luckily, audiences thought the same and it ended up doing considerably well at the box office.
A sequel was planned almost immediately. There was even talk, at one stage, of possibly doing a straight sequel to the remake and then doing another film that would bridge the gap between this Evil Dead and the original by teaming up protagonist Mia with Ash.
It was far from the traditional direction one expects sequels and reboots to take, which made the whole idea refreshing. Talking about the crossover idea, remake director Fede Alvarez said, “I want to write that story, but I want Sam Raimi to direct it.”
Addressing his own follow-up, which could have come before the potential crossover, Alvarez seemed hesitantly optimistic: “We might write a sequel at some point. And the tone won’t be a comedy, but it won’t be like my Evil Dead either. We need to honor the fact that every Evil Dead always departs from whatever the previous one was, don’t you think?”
While Alvarez was hired to write a sequel almost immediately, the ideas never came to fruition. Instead of doing two movies, the crossover became the goal moving forward. Said Alvarez at this past San Diego Comic Con: “My pitch for it was ‘Let’s combine the two worlds and have Jane from my film fighting demons back-to-back with Bruce’ and trying to tell that story, but the tone is the key. What would be the tone?”
As time went on and questions about a follow-up persisted, Alvarez became less and less sure of his involvement and of whether or not a sequel would even happen at all. When asked about it last year, he simply said, “There are no current plans. We’re not talking about it with Sam [Raimi] at all. Like I know right now it’s all about the show and everybody is very happy with that and that’s it.”
That might seem cut and dry, and maybe it is. But there’s always the possibility that instead of bringing Ash into the theatrical sequel, they could bring in Mia for a short arc on Ash Vs Evil Dead instead. This is something that even the show-runners haven’t ruled out as a possibility.
The idea of combining the two characters is fantastic and I honestly think it has a ton of potential for success. These are two very different characters who have gone through the exact same situation and are dealing with it in very different ways. They could play off one another perfectly. I’m holding out hope that we’ll eventually get to see it in some form in the future.
For now, though, we’re still getting our Evil Dead fix and then some in the form of Ash vs. Evil Dead. There are no current big-screen plans, but who knows what could happen down the line.