- Interview: Lindsay Farris on His Love of THE EVIL DEAD and Joining the Cast of ASH VS EVIL DEAD Season 3
- Drive-In Dust Offs: SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE II (1987)
- Contest: Win GATE II Collector’s Edition on Blu-ray
Posted: 24 Feb 2018 11:01 AM PST
Lindsay Farris joins the cast of Ash vs Evil Dead in the new season as Dalton, leader of the modern-day Knights of Sumeria. You'll quickly see Dalton's reverence for Ash when Season 3 premieres on Sunday, and during our recent interview, he talks about his love of the horror and growing up with The Evil Dead:
What was your first experience with the Evil Dead franchise? Did you watch the movies growing up? Have you always been a horror fan?
Lindsay Farris: When I was a kid, Evil Dead was kind of like a rite of passage. I think I was like 13, and my grandma used to show me and my uncle the two horror films on Betamax. One was The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and the other was The Evil Dead. It was just kind of like a bonding thing for me and my grandma and my uncle because the rest of my family hated horror.
20 years later, I'm literally walking into the TV set and there's the cabin, and there's Ash Williams, and then I met Bruce Campbell. You could kind of say that I was a bit of a fanboy. Having seen the first two episodes, you can see that Dalton is sort of a fanboy too. In that sense, it's kind of a "no acting required" role. I just got to kind of step into his shoes and I think it was a really nice way to be able to enter the series.
That is incredibly cool and I'm sure your family loves that you're a part of the series too.
Lindsay Farris: Yeah, one of my favorite reasons in getting the job, was that my grandma and my uncle love Evil Dead. It's still this connective tissue between my family.
What can you tell our readers about Dalton and where he comes from?
Lindsay Farris: While Dalton is a new character to the television franchise, he's the leader of the Knights of Sumeria. Last time, we saw them [in Army of Darkness], they're riding around on horses, they've got plate mail, and they're using spears. Now, they ride motorcycles and use shotguns.
The interesting thing about Dalton is he's kind of like a brain surgeon that's only ever studied the theory. He's got possibly all of the skills and the equipment to be a badass, but he's never actually met a Deadite before. There's this foretold legend about the prophesied one.
Dalton's kind of on the back of a motorcycle, trekking across America looking for this figure, when he meets Kelly, and there's a bit of a trade off. Kelly's got the practical experience, and perhaps Dalton's got a bit more of the theory.
The creative team behind Ash vs Evil Dead have done a great job of introducing new characters that feel real within the world they've created. What was it like on set joining the cast of veteran Deadite-killers?
Lindsay Farris: I think the beautiful thing is that Rob Tapert, Sam Raimi, and Bruce Campbell. It's not like some sort of spinoff, where you've got all of this new, unrelated legend that's not being determined by the original creators. We're all trying to kind of continue to honor the legacy that they have set up. It's a really welcoming family in that sense.
The dynamic we have behind the scenes is very family oriented, and Bruce was incredibly supportive on set too, as is everybody. They were really encouraging as well, in that I really wanted to keep as much of the mythology from the old film franchise as I could. There are a lot of Easter eggs that I worked with those guys on kind of inserting throughout Season 3. The diehard fans, if you keep an eye out, there's a lot of sort of reference back to those old films.
Speaking of diehard fans, I know you were at NYCC last year? What's you experience been like being part of the "Evil Dead' family and interacting with fans?
Lindsay Farris: It was such a gift to literally step into the television set as a fan. What I wanted to make sure is that all of the fans at home could be as close to that experience as possible. That kind of was my benchmark for creating Dalton with these guys. I wanted to really do the fans justice, because fans of this show are unlike any other fans of any other show in the world.
When we were at Comic Con in New York, and they announced Bruce Campbell, and the walls were literally shaking. They're so supportive. You're in these signings, and they're coming up with chainsaw arms. There was this one lady, and she waited in a long line to do this big signing that we had. She had this Band-Aid on her head, and sort of almost like a trickle of blood coming out of the bottom, and her eyes were kind of a little bit like she was concussed. I was like, "Are you okay?" She said, "Oh yeah, I fell off my motorbike on my way to the signing." I was like, "Do you need to go to the hospital?" She's like, "Oh no, the doctor put a Band-Aid on it, it's fine. I'll go after. I really wanted to meet Bruce Campbell." You've got these diehard fans that are willing to go to those lengths, just to meet the people involved. You want to honor them, you know?
Dalton is brand new to the series, so I don't want to spoil too much, but what tease can you give our readers about where he's headed this season?
Lindsay Farris: This season combines all of the blood, guts, and gore from Seasons 1 and 2, and steps it up to a completely new level. You'll meet the biggest, baddest villain that we have ever seen in Ash vs Evil Dead and nothing can prepare you for what happens. I mean we've got tanks this year. That should tell you just how far everything steps up.
Catch up on our coverage of Ash vs Evil Dead by visiting the following links:
The post Interview: Lindsay Farris on His Love of THE EVIL DEAD and Joining the Cast of ASH VS EVIL DEAD Season 3 appeared first on Daily Dead.
Posted: 24 Feb 2018 09:32 AM PST
What's the sign of a good horror sequel? Is it adherence to the things that made the original work? Is it branching off in a new direction while still paying respect? Or is it having a rockabilly-quoting Greaser (big G) with a drill attached to the end of his guitar killing every pastel wearing teen in his wake? The answer is possibly all three, but today we'll focus on the last one with Slumber Party Massacre II (1987), Deborah Brock's ridiculously fun (and delightfully odd) follow up to Amy Holden Jones' cult classic.
Released by Roger Corman's then imprint Concorde Pictures in March followed by a video release in September, SPM II is essentially an updated Beach Blanket Bingo movie dipped in A Nightmare on Elm Street and rolled around in sprinkles of Saved by the Bell. You know same old, same old.
Remember little Courtney from the original film? When she wasn't busy ogling Playgirl centerfolds while licking a lollipop, she and her older sister Valerie managed to survive being slaughtered by the Canadian Tuxedoed Driller Killer. Fast forward five years; Valerie (played here by Cindy Eilbacher) is confined to a mental institution, and Courtney (Crystal Bernard – TV's Wings) seems to be on her way, with constant nightmares of not only the events of the first film but of a leather clad rocker (Atanas Ilitich – Ragin' Cajun) with a shiny and deadly red electric guitar.
Not wanting to visit her sister, Courtney decides instead to go on a "slumber party weekend" at a condo with her girlfriends, who are all members of a band; Amy (Kimberly McArthur – Easy Money), Sheila (Juliette Cummins – Friday the 13th: A New Beginning), Sally (Heidi Kozak – Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood) and Courtney grace us with a Banglesesque (yes, it's a word, don't look it up) tune in the garage before heading to their retreat.
Add in a few boyfriends and/or boyfriend adjacents (Patrick Lowe, Joel Hoffman, Scott Westmoreland), crazy hallucinations (headless dancing chickens, a zit that a Costco tub of Clearacil won't cure), more Banglesesque tunes, a stop in the slaughter so the killer can perform a whole song, bumbling cops, gore galore, inflatable sex doll poolside fervor, and a cheeky commentary on the '80s sheen of the MTV generation, and you have a film so far removed from the first that it barely clings on to the II.
That is partly what's so great about it; the viewer really doesn't need to know the events of the first film (although they could have presented those clips in a clearer fashion since they chose to incorporate them anyway) to like SPM II, only an appreciation of '80s aesthetics and the absurd (of which it happily wallows in both). What both films also possess is good humor; neither show a misogynistic bent to the material, but rather comment on it; and while the first does this through a prism of slasher saturation, SPM II uses the growing banality of music television (even by '87 they were blurring together) to piggyback on Freddy yet not even bothering with any ground rules to battle this iteration of The Driller Killer.
But our fella leans more towards Freddy's Revenge and does all his slaying in the girls' reality, which seems far enough removed from ours that it may as well be in a dream anyway; the musical performances are flat out full songs, not snippets, lending an extra layer of "what the fuck?"-ery that writer/director Brock (Rock n' Roll High School Forever) revels in piling on.
How about another layer? The rock guitar is already very much a phallic symbol; many a guitarist has graced the stage and stroked the neck in orgasmic release while playing a 12 minute solo. Throw a drill on the end of that, and it becomes a caricature of a hoary cliché that was even exhausted by the time this came out; Brock was clearly looking to satirize the toxic masculinity prevalent in rock music at the time.
Oh, you're looking for some more WTF? Instead of creating some hair metal anthem for the killer to belt, he dances around the condo with his flaming red guitar grinder crooning a rockabilly tune as he swivels and swoops, coming across much closer to Gene Vincent than Gene Simmons. Confusing, sure; it seems like a lost opportunity to razz the follicle farmers of the TV age, but the point is more than taken with his head to heel leather. (I'd be dancing too if I had to figure out how to go to the can in that outfit.)
SPM II has a cast that was certainly known to horror lovers at the time, and they all bring infectious enthusiasm to intentionally cardboard cutouts; Bernard would soon find small screen success, and here she conveys a squeaky clean image when she isn't busy having psycho-sexual dreams of her dreamy driller. Yes, "repressed" is covered too in the clever screenplay.
We've all seen more than our share of stupid slashers, with bad character choices on top of ill-advised scenarios driven by leering filmmakers. That films like the original and Slumber Party Massacre II chose to lampoon that stupidity with a strong female gaze, by women filmmakers, right in the thick of it all says as much about the subversive nature of the genre as anything from the French extreme. Perhaps more; even Martyrs has to give it up for a film that has a song called "Let's Buzz" in tribute not to a chainsaw, but a drill.
Slumber Party Massacre II is available on Blu-ray from Scream Factory as part of a Double Feature with Slumber Party Massacre III.
The post Drive-In Dust Offs: SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE II (1987) appeared first on Daily Dead.
Posted: 24 Feb 2018 08:40 AM PST
"There's only one thing more terrifying than the first visit. The second." Tiny critters from beyond return to wreak havoc in teenaged Terry's life in Gate II, and with the early '90s horror sequel coming to Blu-ray from Scream Factory on February 27th, we've been provided with three high-def copies to give away to lucky Daily Dead readers.
Prize Details: (3) Winners will receive (1) Collector's Edition Blu-ray copy of Gate II.
How to Enter: We're giving Daily Dead readers multiple chances to enter and win:
Entry Details: The contest will end at 12:01am EST on March 3rd. This contest is only open to those who are eighteen years of age or older that live in the United States. Only one entry per entry method, per household will be accepted.
The post Contest: Win GATE II Collector’s Edition on Blu-ray appeared first on Daily Dead.
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