For several years running, fans of Bruce Campbell have been eagerly awaiting the time when the larger-than-life personality would announce that he’s agreed to star in a blockbuster superhero film. Oh sure, he might have played three different characters in Sam Raimi‘s SPIDER-MAN trilogy, but those bit parts were hardly enough to satisfy The Chin’s most rabid fan base. Those who follow the man’s career know full-well that Campbell doesn’t sign on to any project lightly, though who wouldn’t want to be a part of the biggest film movement of the past decade, right? Bruce Campbell, that’s who.
In recently speaking with ComicBook.com, Campbell revealed his reasoning for not hopping aboard the Marvel of DC train, and some of his comments may surprise you. In fact, when talking about why he agreed to the SPIDER-MAN spots at all, Campbell told the outlet, “That’s Sam Raimi all the way,” he remarked. “Big blockbuster movies, whenever I see an actor get cast in one of those, I wince, because I go, ‘Oh, that poor son of a bitch is going to be in that suit for 10 years.’ If shooting schedule’s seven months of shooting, you get your one month in the Bahamas, and then you’re promoting for three months, then you go right back to the next sequel, back in that same f-ckingsuit.'”
I must admit that I think the man’s got a point. Even with the little I know about production demands for films like JUSTICE LEAGUE, THOR: RAGNAROK, and AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR, I can’t even begin to imagine how grueling it must be to participate in franchise’s that are that massive. Not only is a commitment like that mentally taxing, it also takes a toll on the old bones, of which an actor like Campbell is no spring chicken.
As the interview continued, Campbell also shared that he’s somewhat uncomfortable interacting with some of the technology used for today’s special effects. Obviously, an aversion to today’s tech could become a real issue when attempting to film a Marvel or DC adventure, which both employ copious amounts of green screen, wire-work, and “invisible character” scenarios.
“You’re looking at tennis balls on sticks. So, that process is actually not for me, even though Ash vs. Evil Dead was all that,” said Campbell. “It was all marks on walls, tennis balls on sticks, the monster’s going to be here, noise over here, you know, that sort of stuff, it’s a different type of acting, and modern day actors are learning new technical skills that the old-timey actors didn’t have to learn. Acting with nothing. That’s what they’re doing now. Castle’s not even there. ‘Oh, we’re going to put a great castle behind you. It’s not there now, but it’s going to be amazing.'”
Lastly, Campbell also seems to think that superhero movies don’t present audience members with characters that are complex enough to stand the test of time.
“My only beef with superheroes is that they’re not flawed enough,” Campbell commented. “Oh, Superman’s got Kryptonite. Well, what the hell’s Kryptonite? I don’t know what that means. Give me Ash, the guy could be, he’s a gas station attendant, you know? The guy’s Mr. Nobody.”
While Campbell’s old school attitude toward superhero films might rub some the wrong way, it certainly gives us enough clues as to why we haven’t seen him sporting a cape or cowl since the big hero boom exploded over a decade ago. I suppose we’ll just have to remain content with him riding out his career as a horror icon for the ages, which ain’t exactly a bad way to roll.