New Line has made it official that a sequel to the The Evil Dead is in the works for WarnerMedia streaming service HBO Max. The film, Evil Dead Rise, will be directed and written by Irish filmmaker Lee Cronin and star Alyssa Sutherland and Lily Sullivan.
The original 1981 pic’s filmmaking team is back for Evil Dead Rise: Sam Raimi, who directed, wrote and executive produced Evil Dead, will serve as EP here; Robert Tapert, who served as EP and producer on the first, will produce; and Bruce Campbell, who starred as Ashley J. Williams and executive produced the original will EP on the second go-round. He will not star in the next chapter here.
Moving the action out of the woods and into the city, Evil Dead Rise tells a twisted tale of two estranged sisters — played by Sutherland (TV’s The Mist and Vikings) and Sullivan (Picnic at Hanging Rock, Jungle) — whose reunion is cut short by the rise of flesh-possessing demons, thrusting them into a primal battle for survival as they face the most nightmarish version of family imaginable
Cronin was chosen by Raimi, Tapert and Campbell to spearhead the sequel given his feature directorial debut on the 2019 horror title The Hole in the Ground.
I understand Evil Dead Rises is being made strictly for HBO Max. There is a chance the movie will get a theatrical release in those offshore territories where the streaming service isn’t available. The 1981 original was a cult movie, only grossing $3 million worldwide theatrically, but it found a bigger audience in the home entertainment arena. The 1987 sequel grossed close to $6M domestic. The threequel, 1992’s Army of Darkness, made $11.5M domestic. Out of all of these, Fede Álvarez’s 2013 reboot for TriStar was a success with a $17M production and a $97.5M global box office gross.
Romel Adam, John Keville and Macdara Kelleher will also serve as EPs on Evil Dead Rises.
Said Raimi in a statement, “I’m thrilled to bring Evil Dead back to its original home at New Line 40 years after the release of the first film. The company’s history as pioneers of horror speaks for itself. I’m equally excited to be working with Lee Cronin, whose gifts as a storyteller make him the ideal filmmaker to continue the enduring legacy of the franchise.”
“At its core, Evil Dead is about ordinary people overcoming extraordinarily terrifying situations,” added Campbell, “I can’t wait for Alyssa and Lily to fill the blood-soaked shoes of those who have come before them and carry on that tradition.”
Said Cronin, “The Evil Dead movies filled my brain with terror and awe when I first saw them at nine years old. I am excited and humbled to be resurrecting the most iconic of evil forces for both the fans and a whole new generation.”
Richard Brener, President and Chief Creative Officer, New Line Cinema added, “New Line has a proud history of involvement in some of the most influential and enduring horror films of all time, and the original The Evil Dead was a landmark moment for the Studio. The movie transformed the genre and with each new installment, Sam, Rob and Bruce have continued to raise the bar. It’s exciting to have them back in the fold for Evil Dead Rise after all these years, especially as they bring with them an immense talent in director Lee Cronin. His inventive spirit and his reverence for the franchise make him the perfect director to unleash Evil Dead once again.”
Evil Dead Rise will be filmed on location in New Zealand, with post-production work completed in Ireland. With New Line releasing domestically, the film will be distributed by Canal Plus in the UK and Metropolitan in France.