1:00pm PT by Philiana Ng
Starz Orders 'Evil Dead' TV Series
Starz is bringing Evil Dead to TV.
The premium network has greenlighted an original series, entitled Ash vs. Evil Dead, that will serve as a follow-up to the horror comedy film franchise, it was announced Monday.
Original Evil Dead director Sam Raimi, producer Rob Tapert and star Bruce Campbell will return for the 10-episode half-hour series, slated for a 2015 premiere.
The series marks Raimi and Tapert's return to Starz following their Spartacus run. Raimi revealed plans to continue the Evil Dead story on the small screen back at Comic-Con.
Campbell reprises his role as the title character Ash, a stock boy, aging lothario and chainsaw-handed monster hunter who has spent the last three decades avoiding responsibility, maturity and the terrors of the Evil Dead. When a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind, Ash is finally forced to face his demons — personal and literal. Destiny, it turns out, has no plans to release the unlikely hero from its evil grip.
Raimi will direct the pilot, which he will co-write with his brother, Ivan (Darkman, Army of Darkness, Drag Me to Hell), and Tom Spezialy (Chuck, Reaper, Desperate Housewives). Sam Raimi will executive produce, along with Tapert and Campbell. Ivan Raimi will co-executive produce, while Aaron Lam (Spartacus) will produce.
"Starz first worked with Sam and Rob on Spartacus, and we are thrilled to be back in business with them,” said Carmi Zlotnik, managing director of Starz. “With Sam writing and directing and Bruce Campbell returning to the screen, we are certain the show will give Evil Dead fans around the world the fix they’ve been craving.”
“Evil Dead has always been a blast. Bruce, Rob, and I are thrilled to have the opportunity to tell the next chapter in Ash’s lame but heroic saga. With his chainsaw arm and his ‘boomstick,’ Ash is back to kick some monster butt. And brother, this time there’s a truckload of it,” said Sam Raimi.
"I'm really excited to bring this series to the Evil Dead fans worldwide — it's going to be everything they have been clamoring for: serious deadite ass-kicking and plenty of outrageous humor,” said Campbell.
“Starz has always been a great creative partner and we are excited to be working with them on this project,” added Tapert.
The original Evil Dead film, released in 1981, centered on Ash and his group of friends who travel to an isolated cabin in the woods, where they unknowingly release demons intent on possessing the living. The film spawned two sequels and a 2013 reboot, which earned $97 million at the worldwide box office.
Ash vs. Evil Dead was packaged by CAA, APA and Hansen Jacobson. Starz will retain domestic and international multiplatform rights, including TV, home entertainment and digital. Campbell is repped by APA and Jacobson Russell Saltz Nassim & de la Torre.
This marks the latest cult property to be rebooted following Showtime's limited-series order of David Lynch's Twin Peaks. For Starz, the new Evil Dead series joins a scripted portfolio that includes Survivor's Remorse, Outlander, Da Vinci's Demons, Power, Black Sails and the upcoming Flesh and Bone.