AMC Network Entertainment LLC

This browser is supported only in Windows 10 and above.

Web Stalker – Bruce Campbell Atones for Bubba Ho-Tep With My Name Is Bruce

Bruce Campbell is used to being mistaken for his on-screen persona. The week he moved into his new home, a neighbor solicited his help. “He came up to my driveway and said, ‘I understand you used to be a movie cowboy on a TV show,” recalls the actor, imitating his neighbor’s drawl. When Campbell confirmed he was, he was enlisted to help run a hundred head of cattle up the road, a request which didn’t phase him in the least. “I said, ‘Hey baby, I’m there,'” he continues. “We rode, and I bounced my ass in the saddle, and we did it — we herded them doggies.”

This sort of experience is the essence of Campbell’s new film My Name Is Bruce, which has had horror fans champing at the bit for over a year. In it, a monster-afflicted small town decides the only person who can save them is the hero they’ve seen bravely smiting the undead in movies. The townsfolk, however, find him less helpful than Campbell’s real-life neighbor did. “Mike Richardson at Dark Horse Comics and his buddy Mark Verheiden, whom he’d worked with on Timecop, pitched this concept, and they had the idea, ‘What if Bruce was really just a jerk and a moron?’ I think by the end of it, some people are going to be very confused by how I’ve portrayed myself,” says Campbell who stars in and directed the movie. “That’s the fun of it. There are some extreme Sunset Boulevard moments, where truth intersects with fiction just a little too roughly.” It’s a classic storyline, however, and one Campbell hopes will charm fans of both movies and comics. “It’s really based on a ’40s cartoon The Adventures of Alan Ladd. Alan Ladd the movie star gets kidnapped by pirates at one point and they think he’s a swashbuckler who can help them,” says Campbell. “We thought it’s kind of like Galaxy Quest for the horror crowd — I sort of owe the horror crowd something!”

Why should Campbell feel that way? Surely he’s given them more than anyone could ever hope for in the form of the immortal TV career . But he still feels he owes them one for receiving his Elvis-meets-the-mummy frolic Bubba Ho-tep with an open mind. “They’re very forgiving and very demanding at the same time. Normally they wouldn’t support a movie like Bubba Ho-tep
because it really isn’t a horror movie way down deep. We suckered them
in, trying to give them a horror movie but also something more, and I
think they appreciated that,” he acknowledges. “But you also have to
give them some basics — a little carnage and mayhem every so often.
That movie was just weird and unique, which is what attracted me to it.”

Campbell saw My Name Is Bruce to be a fun opportunity to do
a seriously independent film. “Everyone talks about ‘independent
films’… well, we don’t know who our distributor is going to be. That’s an
independent film. We’re now entering that phase where it’s time to
peddle our wares and see if anyone wants to cough it up.” As a
director, he wouldn’t have it any other way: “You have to do a lot more
homework, but it’s very liberating at the same time, because you can
basically do whatever. I mean, no one’s gonna get rich off of any of
this. This is a labor of love — it’s a love letter to fans, but also a
sort of punch in the face. It’s a weird approach. I’m just hoping it’s
a movie that more than four people see, as opposed to my last movie The Man With the Screaming Brain.”

Now that My Name Is Bruce is completely finished, the
actor-director will be traveling with the movie to personally introduce
the screenings. “I’m going to 22 cities,
screening the movie and doing Q&A’s afterward… basically just
introducing the movie to the freaks.” That will put him in New York for
a screening at the Sunshine Cinema on Halloween night. “Most of the
year I have to walk around wearing some kind of costume,” comments
Campbell. “I will be going as Bruce Campbell that night.” But if he
could have cast someone else to play him in this latest movie, who
would he choose? That’s easy: “Elvis Presley, of course.”

Read More