Bruce Campbell returned as Ash J. Williams for three seasons of Ash vs. Evil Dead on Starz, a program which fans largely enjoyed but failed to earn major amounts of viewers, with star Ray Santiago thinking that if the series had been available to subscribers of other major streaming services, it would have earned a large enough following to have been renewed for additional seasons. The actor did note that he was happy that the cable network was so supportive of the series and that it was a great home for what the program wanted to accomplish, but that its niche availability limited its reach.
"I loved the home that we had on Starz, but it was so limited in its viewership," Santiago shared during Mainframe Comic Con 2.0 about the series ending. "We could have had a bigger audience were we on a platform like Hulu or Amazon or Netflix, but because we were on this cable subscription, it really limited the audience. Because as the show got on to Netflix, we started to see that people were still watching seasons one through three and were really into it. It was sad because we had this greatness and it didn't get the praise that it should have gotten. And, personally, I was really looking forward to seeing where things were gonna go with the show. Just because we had set up so many relationships, it was just all there to play with."
The franchise debuted back in 1981 with The Evil Dead, resulting in Campbell reprising his role in two big-screen sequels. In the years since the trilogy concluded with 1992's Army of Darkness, fans hoped to see new adventures featuring the character. In 2013, fans got a reboot of the concept and, despite many fans appreciating its accomplishments, others still hoped to see another movie featuring Campbell. The actor previously pointed out that fans should appreciate what they were given with the series, as three seasons of the series covered what would have taken half a dozen movies to accomplish.
"People should be kissing Starz's ass, because it is the only outlet that would let us have a little bit of creative control, but also, it's unrated," Campbell previously pointed out to ComicBook.com. "This is uncut. We had to probably scale down for some countries who couldn't take the full monty, but this is unrated television, and for the uber Evil Dead fan, man, it isn't going to get any better than that. If this was on AMC, Ash would be going, 'Gosh golly, what's going on over there?'"
He added, "With a TV series, they commit to doing a full season, then another full season, and so, as far as page count, time spent with Ash, this is the only way to do it, and as an actor, now we can really dig at the character," the actor noted. "You can spend time with him. With a movie, you got to tell the plot, they get very plot-oriented, but with a TV show, you can actually go, 'Okay, Ash has a daughter. What the hell's that like?' He's like the worst dad ever, but trying to be the greatest dad ever. Plus, you've got this over a three year period. If we did these as movies, you'd get one every two years. We'd be about three hours deep into the series now if we did this as movies, and guess what? If one of them failed, it would kill the whole thing."
Stay tuned for updates on a possible future for Ash vs. Evil Dead.
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