We might have seen the last of Bruce Campbell playing Ash in the Evil Dead movies, but even cult franchises have a tendency to steamroll on. Most fans would agree on the difficulty of finding someone who could bring the same combination of screen presence, physical capability and engaging personality, but some have put forward the suggestion of CM Punk to take up the chainsaw and boomstick.
His is a name with which you might not be familiar, as he’s not long been a genuine actor. Prior to this, he spent 15 years as a professional wrestler, where at one point he lasted well over a year as the WWE Champion after defeating John Cena, and left in 2014 to pursue a different path as an MMA fighter. After insidious horror film Girl On the Third Floor hit Netflix though, fans made a swift connection between its star and the deadite-slaying idiot.
— Billy 🤘💀 (@ReallyGothPuppy) March 3, 2020
— Nick Lani (@Lanipator) March 3, 2020
— Graham Whitfield (@GDotWhit) February 29, 2020
After watching Girl on the third floor, @CMPunk would make an awesome ash Williams in an evil dead reboot. Just saying.
— Macmaniac.art (@macmaniac_art) February 29, 2020
— Fidel Murillo (Chicano) (@fidelasincastro) February 29, 2020
@CMPunk was great in girl on the third floor he really had me feeling like he could play a character like ash in evil dead
— StreetVybz (@djstreetvybz306) March 3, 2020
….time travel shenanigans. We recast campbell with CM punk as a young ash, get Jane Levy back, boom. Instant success for Evil dead crossover.
— 🌈 Floofball 🌈 (@RoombaFurry) March 3, 2020
I know most will say no but I thought @CMPunk looked and sounded like early ‘Evil Dead’ Ash in ‘Girl on the Third Floor’. I wouldn’t be against him doing a parallel universe ED Ash.
— Sean (@ASlenderMann) March 4, 2020
As a MASSIVE FAN of the Evil Dead franchise I honestly think @CMPunk as what it takes to be Ash. I would love to see him read off some lines from the movies. https://t.co/2fz3m1x1c2
— beardedmexican (@PaydenJack) March 4, 2020
After watching @CMPunk in Girl on the 3rd Floor I can’t think,of anyone else I’d like to see take on the role of Ash. With all due respect.
— tedd_walley (@tedd_walley) March 2, 2020
@CMPunk just watched Girl on the Third Floor. Good flick. While watching I couldn’t stop thinking you would make a bad ass Ash in an Evil Dead movie.
— Craig (@craigb1975) March 2, 2020
Punk’s transition to acting is a recent career turn that has also included fight commentary and comic book writing. In his wrestling days, he cameoed as himself in French comedy Queens of the Ring and animated Flintstones feature Stone Age Smackdown, but only properly began appearing in movies last year. He had a small role in Jen & Sylvia Soska’s remake of David Cronenberg’s sophomore horror feature Rabid, where he appeared as a nightclub predator picking the wrong target in the story’s newly vampiric protagonist.
As mentioned above, he was also the lead in Travis Stevens’ directorial debut, where he played a despicable excuse for a human being yet one also oddly compelling, and managed to maintain viewer interest in scenes where he had nobody to play off against and reacted credibly to being menaced by inexplicable supernatural occurrences, not entirely dissimilar to what an Evil Dead movie would require of him.
While it’s certainly a shame that we’ll never see more of Campbell in his iconic role, if the franchise must go on without him, then Sam Raimi could certainly do worse than bring on board someone swiftly making a name for himself within precisely the community to which a potential new Evil Dead movie would need to appeal.