Prolific actor Emilio Rivera was one of the last 3 From Hell characters to get his own teaser poster. However, unlike Otis, Baby, Captain Spaulding, etc., his was the only one not to also include a character name. At the time, he was simply described as a “member of the Black Satans MCC.” Indeed, IMDb lists his character only as “Actor.”
Rivera has an expansive list of credits to his name, but he will be most well known to fans of Sons of Anarchy as Marcus Álvarez, and is currently appearing on spin-off show Mayans. Wicked Horror nabbed him for a chat about 3 From Hell, and the endlessly enthusiastic actor sold the living hell out of the movie (just in case you were still on the fence for some reason). Mild spoilers for 3 From Hell follow, so proceed with caution.
WH: Tell me a little bit about your character in 3 From Hell, who’s kind of mysterious.
Emilio Rivera: I’m a member of a gang called The Black Satans, a very violent group. Somebody very close to them is killed and they seek out revenge against The Devil’s Rejects and you know how crazy they can be, you know what I mean? They’re a little crazier than I am, you know? [laughs]
WH: You’ve kind of met your match, then?
Emilio Rivera: Oh yeah, they’re wild ones for sure. Cool people in person, but they’re wild characters! Psychos, you know?
WH: How did you get involved with the project? Did you reach out, were you approached, what’s the story there?
Emilio Rivera: They called my agent and said Rob Zombie is doing this movie, and they made an offer. Now, I was in the middle of something else, but I told them we have to drop everything because I need to do this Rob Zombie movie. And it worked out.
WH: Were you a fan of the previous movies?
Emilio Rivera: Yes I am. What’s good about these movies is they look real, they’re not so perfect, it’s just real life. These psychos are real and there’s nothing glamorous about it, which is what makes these movies so great. They’re brutal. Straight up brutal. I remember that one scene from Devil’s Rejects where they cut that guy’s face off his face and then they’re wearing it, you know? That kind of thing sticks with me for a long time, that’s the caliber of these people. These psychos.
WH: Are you a horror fan in general?
Emilio Rivera: Always have been, always have been. Ever since I was a kid. Particularly now, you know, all the black and white stuff is so phony but when you have these artists working within the genre like Rob Zombie and the stuff is scary because these kinds of people actually exist. Stuff like IT is fun, it’s comical, but then something like 3 From Hell you’re watching it thinking “s**t, these people really exist and this stuff actually happens.”
WH: Did working with Rob Zombie live up to your expectations?
Emilio Rivera: Totally. But he was different than I thought he would be. He really is one of the mellowest, coolest cats. I was expecting something like what you see onstage but he was real chill. I really loved working with him, he was really, really cool. He and Sheri [Moon Zombie], [Bill] Moseley, [Richard] Brake, they were just really sweet.
WH: Right, very different from their characters.
Emilio Rivera: Yeah they all look the same, but they’re just great f******g people. Just really, really nice. Very caring. They’re all vegans so they really care about the environment, they care about animals, they just care about the world. Really cool people.
WH: What was the hardest part of the shoot for you?
Emilio Rivera: The hardest part… Actually, you know what, they made it easy for me. Rob let me know exactly what he wanted but then he also let me play a little too, which is always the best thing for an actor. Getting to play around. There were some scenes, especially during the finale, everything I wanted to try he was like “go for it, man.” There was just so much freedom. It was a great experience. It was bad ass.
WH: On the flip-side, what was the best part of the experience for you?
Emilio Rivera: I can’t say, because the movie hasn’t come out yet, but the best part for me was shooting that finale scene. It gets really crazy. I can’t say any more than that, but that was my favorite part of the shoot, man. The only bad part was when we stopped filming! I just wanted to continue working on this movie but hopefully there’s a little bit more down the line.
WH: So you’d definitely be up for working with Rob Zombie again?
Emilio Rivera: Hey, like I told my agent, if Rob Zombie has a movie, we have to do it. If Rob Zombie is coming at me, let’s do it, man. I told Rob, we had a good conversation about it while doing pickups, and I told him I’ll do this only if I can be in every Rob Zombie movie from now on. So, there you go!
WH: What have you got coming up after 3 From Hell?
Emilio Rivera: Right now I’m doing a show called Mayans, it’s a spin-off from Sons of Anarchy, it comes out every Tuesday night at 10PM on FX, and then I have another show on Netflix called On My Block, which is really funny if you haven’t seen it, but right now it’s all about Mayans, so we’ll see where that goes. If you haven’t seen 3 From Hell, though, you’re in for a treat! You’re gonna love it, man!
Tickets for the September 16th/17th/18th nationwide release of
3 From Hell are available at FathomEvents.com/3FromHell