An Interview With ‘3 From Hell’ Star Bill Moseley

September 10, 2019

Written by Kelli Marchman McNeely

Kelli Marchman McNeely is the owner of She is an Executive Producer of "13 Slays Till Christmas" which is out on Digital and DVD and now streaming on Tubi. She has several other films in the works. Kelli is an animal lover and a true horror addict since the age of 9 when she saw Friday the 13th. Email:



Rob Zombie’s 3 From Hell is set to be unleashed on September 16th. Ahead of the premiere, I had the pleasure of sitting down with horror icon Bill Moseley, who first played the role of the brutal badass Otis Firefly in House of 1,000 Corpses back in 2003. Moseley took on Otis again in the second film of the trilogy, The Devil’s Rejects. Now, Moseley is back in 3 From Hell.





Zombie’s bloody trilogy follows the Firefly family, Otis, Baby (Sheri Moon Zombie), Captain Spaulding (Sid Haig) and Winslow (Richard Brake) as the slash their way out of prison and hit the road on the run.





Moseley gave me insight into who Otis really is, how he thinks, and how he became the iconic character with a taste for bloodshed. He also reminded me that while Otis is a bad man he does have a good side, he will do anything to protect his family.





Horror Fuel: “I saw 3 From Hell last night, I LOVED it! I think it may be the best of the franchise.”


Bill Moseley: “Thank God for Rob Zombie!”


Horror Fuel: “I know, right? The way it ended, I can’t help wonder if the trilogy might become something more. At least I hope it does. But even if the franchise stops with 3 From Hell, that was a killer ending.”


Bill Moseley: “You know, the way the credits role, it was a little more hopeful than The Devil’s Rejects. I wondered how we would survive the end of The Devil’s Rejects. Then I sat down and thought about it and it occurred to me, considering who was shooting at us, the Ruggsville Sheriff’s Department [laughter] they couldn’t even shoot straight. There were a million to one odds that we’d survive.”


Horror Fuel: “Well, Captain Spaulding, Baby, and Otis are simply hard to kill. That’s been proven time and time again in the trilogy. You’re next to unstoppable.”



Bill Moseley: “Unstoppable, but not immortal.”



Horror Fuel: “You and I have met face to face several times at Days of the Dead Atlanta. One of my favorite things to watch is you and Kane Hodder interact because your tables are always close. You’re always such a nice guy, so I can’t help but be curious what it’s like to go from that guy to Otis, a brutal killer. What’s that process of getting into Otis’ head like?”



Bill Moseley: “I’m actually a pretty rotten human being, I’m just really good at playing nice. Otis is really my natural state [he says in a very serious tone]…[laughter]…I’m just kidding. It’s fun to play those characters. Being someone like Otis would be a hazard to my health and my family, my wife and daughters, our dogs and cats. It’s always good to have characters like that to play. With Otis, you have to go to some really dark places, which seems to be pretty easy for me for some strange reason. I guess some psychoanalyst could have fun figuring that out. The trick is with not so much getting into Otis, but getting back before lunchtime.”


Horror Fuel: “I can imagine that it’s not easy being him then trying to get him out of your head.”


Bill Moseley: “Some people do what is called method acting, like acting like Otis for weeks or months, but that can get a little tough when you head back to the hotel or try to get a Slurpee at the 7/11. Sometimes it can escalate stuff that would be pretty normal. I leave Otis on the set. That’s the trick.”


Horror Fuel: “I could imagine you could get into a lot of trouble if you brought Otis out on the street or home with you.

In your opinion, what made Otis and Baby the way they are, was it nature or nurture? I mean, were they just born bad?”



Bill Moseley: “I would say probably a combination of the two. Otis has the luxury – I guess that’s what you call it – of being born without a conscious. That certainly helps make him who he is. He’s kind of a sociopath, though I hate to put labels on him. He doesn’t have a conscious, but he does have a sense of honor. He’s absolutely got a sense of family. The rest of the stuff he’s not really concerned about. I think if he had a spirit animal, it would probably be a shark. Sharks do a lot of bad things without thinking about it.”


Horror Fuel: “That’s a great description and I have to agree with you, he’s a shark. He’s a bad man, but he’s such a great character.


Bill Moseley: “When I first started working with Rob, I had met him at a horror awards show, and he had seen me as “Chop Top,” and he loved “Chop Top.” When I was first offered Otis in House of 1,000 Corpses. I thought he wanted his own version of “Chop Top.” It was Rob who saw more of a kickass, bare-chested, badass Otis. I really think of myself more like “Chop Top.” I always like to give great props to Rob for seeing the inner Otis when I did not. He led me gently, but firmly away from “Chop Top” and led me to Otis. He is a badass, honorable, but he doesn’t take any crap and swings a mean machete.”


Moseley as Bobby “Chop Top” Sawyer (Leatherface’s brother) in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2


Horror Fuel: “Otis is definitely an ass-kicker. And I like “Chop Top”. As for Rob, I’m a big fan. Both his films and his music are so unique, distinct. I love that.


Bill Moseley: “Ass-kicker is right.”


Horror Fuel: “What was your favorite scene to film in 3 From Hell?”


Bill Moseley: “My favorite scene? Let’s see. I really had a good time with me and Richard Brake in the scene where we are plotting to free Baby and I’m eating a can of beans on a hill outside and we’re talking. I’m eating the best fucking beans in the world after eating that prison slop and trying to get the taste of that slop out of my mouth. It was the last scene that we shot and by then we were so locked in and so comfortable. I have such a good time working with Richard and that scene was so easy to shoot, it was so organic. I look back on that and it seemed almost effortless. The cameras were rolling, but it was like there were no cameras there. It just felt like two guys talking in the story. As an actor, it’s always fun to just be there and not be thinking about stuff. Should I look over there, should I emphasize that third word? Stuff actors come up with. That was one of those rare times when we were just in the moment.”


Horror Fuel: “It was a very natural scene, just two brothers talking. It felt very real.”


Bill Moseley: “Absolutely.”


Horror Fuel: “What do you have coming up?”


Bill Moseley: “Right now, I’m doing a music project. I’m working with a band called War Beasts and we’ve formed a band called Mister Machine. I’m working on that and I’m working writing two different screenplays. I’m trying to do all of that before my convention season begins. I’m flying to Louisville then I start just about every weekend through the beginning of December. Somewhere in there, my wife and I are taking a vacation to Vietnam and Cambodia. I’m going to be flying a lot, my eyes are going to bulging out of my head.”


Horror Fuel: “You’re a busy man, but it sounds very exciting. One of my favorite things to do at Days of the Dead Atlanta is to stand back and watch you and Kane Hodder interact.”


Bill Moseley: “It’s a lot of fun. That’s one thing I love about this genre, it’s so much fun and there are so many great men and women, Kane, Danielle Harris, Linda Blair. It’s just so much fun.”


Horror Fuel: “Is there a place where fans can find your schedule?”


Bill Moseley: “They can always follow me on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. I usually put something up about where I’ll be.”


Horror Fuel: “I’ll probably see you at Days of the Dead: Atlanta.”


Bill Moseley: “Come on up. It’s always a lot of fun. I love Atlanta.”


Horror Fuel: “The last time I saw you there you were having a dance-off with Hodder. It was hilarious [laughter].”


Bill Moseley: “[laughter] I know if you saw that movie Old 37, we play brothers and we drive around in an old ambulance and listen to the police scanner and cause mayhem for the victims of the accidents. Kane doesn’t speak in that movie. I say, ‘Hey, do the chicken dance.’ And he does this chicken dance. Ever since he’s done that – he was so funny – when we get together I make him do the chicken dance.”


Horror Fuel: “I love it!”


Bill Moseley: “Oh, yeah, we have a lot of fun.”


Horror Fuel: “Speaking of fun, I loved 3 From Hell. I think it may very well be the best of the franchise.”


Bill Moseley: “I can’t wait for people to see it. Rob did a really good job and we’re moving things forward and I think that’s the important part. He did it in such way -it’s not like we were blown up by an Atom Bomb or tied with chains and thrown into the sea – it’s open for more murder, mischief, and mayhem. I haven’t heard of anything to that extent, but I hope there’s more to come.”


Horror Fuel: “I hope so. I would love to see the Fireflys continue to raise hell for a few more movies.”


Bill Moseley: “Well, let’s hope there’s more.”



As always, Moseley is such a great guy. I love that he really throws himself into a character, whether it’s Otis, “Chop Top”, or one of his many other roles. He’s simply a fantastic actor. Be sure to see Bill Moseley in action in 3 From Hell, opening in theaters on September 16th (learn more here).

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