Most people know that Stephen King was instrumental in getting Sam Raimi’s The Evil Dead the exposure it deserved after King caught a screening of the film at Cannes and then let the filmmakers plaster his glowing review-quote all over their marketing materials which declared the movie to be “The most ferociously original horror film of the year”. But I doubt that nearly as many were aware of the fact that he helped the sequel get made too. ‘Arrow In The Head’ reports that star Bruce Campbell spoke with COD and told the tale:
“On the second movie, Evil Dead 2, we were having trouble getting financing. We were prepping it and trying to get it going. We had a woman who was kind of like doing scheduling stuff, and we had to let her go. So she was a crew member, and she took off down to North Carolina and started making all these movies”.
“Dino De Laurentiis is making movies down there. Who does she run into? She gets on the crew of Maximum Overdrive, directed by Stephen King. Stephen was like, “What are you up to?” And she was like, “I just came from working with these guys trying to get money for Evil Dead 2.” He goes, “Evil Dead 2? They can’t get the money for that?” She goes “No.” He calls Dino De Laurentiis and goes, “You should make this movie.” I think we had a deal … we met with Dino and I think we had a deal in about half an hour, and a basic understanding”.
So without King, we may not have had the wonderfully crazy Evil Dead 2, and we may not have even had the Evil Dead franchise!