Interview with Bruce Campbell of "Lodge 49" - Primetime TV Show Articles From The TV MegaSite

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By Suzanne

Bruce Campbell

Interview with Bruce Campbell of "Lodge 49" on AMC 9/27/18

It was great to speak with Bruce on the phone for 10 minutes. I wish we'd had longer. I had a list of questions, but I only asked a few because we were just chatting so much about the show. He seems like such a nice, charming, smart, funny and interesting guy, just like so many of the characters he plays.

I know, it's not very professional to gush, but he's been one of my favorite actors ever since he starred in the short-lived TV series "The Adventures of Brisco County Jr." in 1993. You may know him from the Evil Dead movies or one of his many wonderful TV roles in "Burn Notice," "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys," "Xena: Warrior Princess," his starring role in "Jack of All Trades" or the recent Evil Dead TV series "Ash Vs. Evil Dead" on Starz. Honestly, I think he would have made a great superhero, especially Superman or Batman.

In "Lodge 49," a fun drama-comedy on AMC, the characters talk about an almost-mythical real estate developer, "The Captain," AKA Gary (Bruce, of course). It's a very good show that airs on Mondays, and Bruce joins in the last few episodes. I sure hope it's renewed for Season 2!

Here's the audio of our interview. Below is the transcript.

Lauren: Bruce, I have Suzanne for you.

Bruce: Hello.

Suzanne: Hi, Bruce. How are you?

Bruce: I'm spectacular. How are you?

Suzanne: Good, good. I just finished binge-watching "Lodge 49."

Bruce: Wow, crazy. What is it, ten episodes? Is that what it is?

Suzanne: Yeah, yeah. It was great. It was awesome.

Bruce: It's a kooky show, isn't it?

Suzanne: It is, it really is. And at first I thought it was a little too slow, and then it kind of drew me in, and then I was hooked.

Bruce: It's the type of thing that you actually have to, you need the right mental shift when you watch the show. You need to be willing to settle in.

Suzanne: Well, yeah.

Bruce: The weather's getting lousy. It started to rain. Fall's coming. It's the perfect show. You settle in and just let it take you away. You know why I think it's going to succeed is because it's not trying too hard.

Suzanne: Yeah, I saw somebody-

Bruce: A lot of these shows are really trying to hold your attention.

Suzanne: Right, that's true. Well, you know, there's so many little details, though, too. And so many layers to it, and then when stuff happens, you kind of go, "Oh yeah, that's why they said that way back in that other episode."

Bruce: That's right. Like my character, they keep alluding to The Captain.

Suzanne: Right, right. I kind of figured you would be-

Bruce: He took a while to show up.

Suzanne: I kind of figured you would be The Captain only because I knew you were going to be in the episode. Otherwise, it would have been a total shock.

Bruce: That's right.

Suzanne: There was something, I can't remember now what it was. I just saw in the last few episodes, "Oh yeah, they said that". It's funny.

Bruce: That's right, yeah. Good writing.

Suzanne: Yeah, oh, no, it's wonderful writing. And I think the best part of it, I mean, the story's really good and everything. I like the characters. The characters are just great, and it's so rare to find TV shows-

Bruce: Very interesting characters. Yeah, you normally don't have TV shows about plumbing supplies salesmen. It's not going to happen. They're either ER doctors, or they're saving someone's life-

Suzanne: Cops.

Bruce: Or you're an alcoholic cop. It's never just some kooky random guy. That's why, again, I think you're right, the characters will hook you.

Suzanne: Yeah, and it's really rare to get such a depth of character in a TV show. You get more depth-

Bruce: It is. Although, that is the beauty of TV is if any actor's ever looking for character development, that's where you'll find it. You won't find it in an hour and a half movie. You'll find it in ten hours of television.

Suzanne: Sure. But it's rare that it's this good, to be honest. I watch a lot of TV.

Bruce: TV used to have the worst writers on the planet, now they have the best.

Suzanne: Yeah, you're right about that.

Bruce: Different environment now.

Suzanne: So how did this part come about for you?

Bruce: Mr. Paul Giamatti. He, as one of the executive producer pants of the show, he and I have been sort of acquaintances, but we've never worked together. He sent me an email. And I was just finishing up a 35-city book tour last fall. And I wasn't looking to do anything. I was looking to go suck my thumb for a couple of months back home in Oregon. And he goes, "Look, you gotta read it because you gotta do it." And he's a really good actor. When a good actor is saying, "You gotta take this part because it's for you, you need to do this part." I was like, "Whatever." So then I read it, I was like, "Oh crap, you're right." So my last book signing was in Tampa, I had to turn the car around and race up to Atlanta to shoot the show.

Suzanne: Oh, that's interesting. They shot it in Atlanta?

Bruce: They do. They shoot everything in Atlanta now.

Suzanne: That's true. I figured since-

Bruce: It's the new hotspot.

Suzanne: I figured since it takes place in Long Beach, they'd just shoot in Long Beach, but I guess that-

Bruce: No, it's that crazy incentives various states offer. And Georgia is succeeding tremendously because they give incentive on the entire budget, not just what money is spent in the state. So the fat cat producer can get a rebate on his salary too.

Suzanne: That's interesting.

Bruce: So believe me, that's why, "Oh, it takes place in Alaska?  Good, we're shooting in Atlanta." It's just too enticing.

Suzanne: Well, it does snow in Atlanta, I'm not sure it's enough to make it look like Alaska, but I guess in the summertime...

Bruce: They have special effects for that.

Suzanne: Oh, right. In fact, it's funny because I live in a small town in Arkansas, and I know two people-

Bruce: Wow.

Suzanne: I know. I met two people in the last few months who said they're moving to Atlanta. One because he does some kind of technical camera crew thing I don't understand, and the other one's an actor. And they were like, "Oh, yeah, Atlanta's the place to go."

Bruce: Believe me, that is the ... What was the hotspot before? Like my state of Michigan had a good incentive for a while, so that was cooking for a while, then they rescinded that. Every time they rescind it because I think the states are starting to realize that maybe they don't get all their money back. And why should just one industry get special treatment? I never understood that. My home state of Michigan, why did the auto industry not get the special treatment?

Suzanne: Good point.

Bruce: Kind of weird. I think because we're a sexy industry.

Suzanne: Right. Well, it probably brings in tourists, don't you think? People say, "Oh, I want to go where my favorite TV show is filmed," or whatever.

Bruce: Yeah, kind of. They started to do like a "Burn Notice" tour.

Suzanne: Oh, really. Wow. That would be cool. I never-

Lauren: Hi.

Suzanne: Sorry.

Lauren: Sorry, I have to jump in. You only have a couple more minutes.

Suzanne: Oh no. Okay, so gosh, let me go through my list here. Have you heard anything about a season two yet?

Bruce: No. And that's above my pay grade. I'm coming in doing my little bit, and then I don't know. But it's been getting some noise, so I would say it's likely.

Suzanne: And it's interesting.

Bruce: Not every show sticks, you know what I mean? This one, I think it's going to succeed because they're sort of doing it in an organic way of like you say, it starts slow, but then you got into it, and then it was no problem. Get used to the pace.

Suzanne: And the ending was great, it set up so many stories.

Bruce: Which is cool. That's kind of what we wanted so as a viewer you go, "Oh, I want to see what happens."

Suzanne: Yeah, exactly. And they even ... I was afraid they killed you off, but then they didn't. But it's weird, I don't know if you thought about this, but they showed you bandaged from head to toe, which I thought was kind of weird because it's not like ... When they were showing you impaled, it was only that one part of you, so why was your entire body bandaged? But if it was a soap opera I'd say they'd bring you back as a different actor, but that would be a bad idea.

Bruce: Yeah, I don't know. Never say never. I never second guess TV shows now because they're all so weird and different. Like some shows change the whole cast like Fargo, every year, they just swap everything out.

Suzanne: That's true.

Bruce: And what is it, American Horror Story?

Suzanne: All those-

Bruce: The actors play different roles every season. That's cool.

Suzanne: Yeah. That's what I just thought of, what I was trying to think of earlier is that when they said, "Don't you know, everything is weird?" That's kind of like the slogan of the show, isn't it?

Bruce: Everything is weird, yeah.

Suzanne: Scott said that.

Bruce: Yeah, I wish it well because I'm always a sucker for great writing, and they had good directors, they obviously have a really good set up there. And Paul Giamatti I'm sure is getting every actor that he knows. He's probably harassing them to come and be in his show. So I have high hopes for it.

Suzanne: And it was great surprise casting at the end when they finally showed ... I don't want to spoil it because I'm going to put this up, but, yeah.

Bruce: That's cool.

Suzanne: The guy at the end, yeah. So real quick, do you have any other projects that you could tell us about that are coming ou,t or anything that you're working on?

Bruce: I'm sort of entering the game show phase of my career, a game show host. I have a show that I've created with a guy called Last Fan Standing. And basically it's a pop culture game show. Questions like, "How much does Thor's hammer weigh?" Stuff like that. And everybody who comes in gets to play. Everyone gets a voting device, so anybody who walks through that door could be the last fan standing. So I got about six different, we do the show at theaters around the country, so I've got a bunch of cities coming up, we're gonna do that. And then hopefully parlay that into an actual show.

Suzanne: That sounds like a fun show.

Bruce: Yeah, it is fun. It's very topsy-turvy because you never know who's going to get up there.

Suzanne: Sure. You're going to be the next Merv Griffin then, right?

Bruce: It's time, I'm ready for that. Wear brightly colored suits, and crack jokes. I'm ready.

Suzanne: I could see you doing that.

Bruce: And then I'll move to Arkansas, live a nice, simple life.

Suzanne: Oh, no, well, if you do, move to Little Rock.

Bruce: Okay, deal.

Suzanne: All right. Well, thanks for talking to me again. I appreciate it.

Bruce: Thank you, my dear.

Suzanne: All right.

Lauren: Thanks again, so much.

Bruce: Talk to you next time.

Suzanne: Bye-bye.

Lauren: Thanks. Bye-bye.


My interview with Brent Jennings (Ernie).

My review of the show

We spoke with Bruce Campbell on behalf of his role in AMC’s “Lodge 49.” In the show, Campbell plays Gary Green, a powerful and elusive business man on a personal downward spiral.

Watch a Clip of Bruce Campbell in “Lodge 49”

“Lodge 49” is a light-hearted, endearing modern fable set in Long Beach, California about a disarmingly optimistic local ex-surfer, Dud (Wyatt Russell), who’s drifting after the death of his father and collapse of the family business. Dud finds himself on the doorstep of a rundown fraternal lodge, where a middle-aged plumbing salesman and “Luminous Knight” of the order, Ernie (Brent Jennings), welcomes him into a world of cheap beer, easy camaraderie and the promise of Alchemical mysteries that may — or may not — put Dud on the path to recover the idyllic life he's lost.  Jim Gavin (author, Middle Men) serves as creator, writer, and executive-producer alongside showrunner Peter Ocko (“Pushing Daisies,” “The Office”).  Additional executive producers include Paul Giamatti (“Billions,” Sideways, “Outsiders,” “Hoke”), Dan Carey (“Outsiders,” “Hoke,” John Dies at the End, All Is Bright) and Jeff Freilich (“Halt and Catch Fire,” “Grace and Frankie”).

 Campbell is known for his iconic roles across film and television, as well as for his vast directing career. Some of his most renowned projects include “The Evil Dead,” in which he starred and co-executive produced, “Crimewave,” the “Maniac Cop” series, “The Adventures of Brisco Country, Jr.,” “Jack of all Trades,” “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys” and “Xena: Warrior Princess.” In 2013, Bruce co-produced the hit remake of “Evil Dead,” joined his filmmaking pal Sam Raimi on “Oz the Great and Powerful” and completed an impressive seven-year run on the spy show, “Burn Notice,” USA's #1 show on cable. More than two decades after the release of “Army of Darkness,” Bruce returned to his most iconic role for Starz’s “Ash vs Evil Dead.” 

Watch Bruce Campbell on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” HERE

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