Sam Raimi's Evil Dead represents B-movie horror material executed to its goriest (and inadvertently campiest) extremes, but can Fede Alvarez' remake - co-written and produced by Raimi - succeed as the ultimate grotesque and surreal exercise in unadulterated body horror that its predecessor was intended to be? Well, those red band trailers are a good start.
Today, we've rounded up a handful of new Evil Dead-related tidbits for your reading pleasure, including the new release date, official R Rating following the initial NC-17 handed down by the MPAA and an update on whether or not fans can expect an appearance by Ash himself, Bruce Campbell (who's co-producing the remake).
Campbell took to his Twitter account last night to break the news that Sony is moving Evil Dead up a week to release on April 5th, in response to Fox shifting its Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy buddy comedy The Heat to join the 2013 Summer lineup yesterday. That means Alvarez' gorefest is now opening against the wide release of Jurassic Park 3D, rather than the historical sports drama 42 and Scary Movie 5.
Meanwhile, Alvarez confirmed the initial NC-17 Evil Dead cut on Twitter, saying:
Was proud of scoring a NC17 when submitted! But we had to cut stuff out to get an R and get the film into theaters.
Raimi and co-writer Diablo Cody were calling the remake "unbelievably violent," well before the "Everything but the kitchen sink" preview footage arrived online. The film has now secured an official R Rating for "strong bloody violence and gore, sexual content and language," with Alvarez promising that the theatrical version of Evil Dead includes "ALL the stuff you are seeing in the trailers."
That means all the bodily mutilation, bloody fluid exchange and tree rape one could hope for, coming in a Lovecraftian horror tale that exploits the frailty of physical human form and our powerlessness in the face of greater, universal, forces that we can neither fully understand nor comprehend. Happy viewing, ya sickos.
Meanwhile, earlier this month, Campbell reaffirmed on his Twitter account that he's producing Evil Dead, but insists he won't be appearing onscreen. The fan-fave has been sticking to that line since the New York Comic-Con, where he also went to great lengths clarifying the rite-of-passage Jane Levy endured for Campbell to dub her worthy of being "the new Ash." Last year, the actor hinted at the logic behind his absence in the remake as follows:
“I’m not at liberty to discuss [my possible cameo]. But the thing is we want it to be a standalone movie. You’re going to have some references [to the original] in there and there’s going to be things the fans will enjoy as far as familiar aspects, but it’s a whole new ball game.”
To be honest, a Campbell cameo - be it in the background or a supporting role - might've detracted from the serious (and genuinely disturbing) viewing experience the filmmakers are assembling, proving too incongruous within the overall design of the remake. Sure, it's disappointing for hard-core fans, but if the new Evil Dead does its job properly, the lack of Campbell shouldn't be so much of an issue.
Look for Evil Dead in theaters on April 5th, 2013.