An instantly recognizable actor on big and small screens for more than 50 years, Lee Majors has joined the cast of Ash vs. Evil Dead for its blood-splattered second season. While in attendance at this year’s Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas to promote the Starz network’s flagship series, we got the chance to talk to him about everything from starting his career in horror, working with Bruce Campbell, and how binge-watching the first season convinced him that he needed to be a part of it.
Were you a fan of the Evil Dead movies?
I was never a big horror person. The only horror movie I ever did in my career, and I was only getting started… I played Joan Crawford’s husband, believe it or not, in a picture. 1963, black and white, directed by William Castle, who was a poor man’s Alfred Hitchcock. In my little hometown in Kentucky, which is very small, there was one little theater so they put on the marquee ‘Starring Lee Majors in Strait-Jacket,’ the name of the film, ‘…with Joan Crawford.’ People came in and out of the hollers to watch the film and she chopped my head off with an axe before the credits came up. The only other time I was seen, my head was in the bed at one point. That was my first experience with horror and my first film credit, believe it or not. I don’t even think I got credit.
But you got on the marquee.
At home, but not on the film. That was where people paid their 25, 30 cents, whatever it was back then, and they didn’t even see me, so I never went home for a while. All my stuff, all the series I’ve done, I’ve done about seven, were all action-oriented, family fare, so to speak. Six Mill, [The Six Million Dollar Man], the families watched that one together, and they let their kids watch it. Fall Guy, the same way.