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Sci Fi takes first ‘Pass’ at original pix

Horror hero Campbell does 'Devil's' work

Sean Cunningham (“Friday the 13th”) is directing Bruce Campbell and Chase Masterson in “Devil’s Pass,” the first of five low-budget telepics being produced shotgun-style in Canada for cable’s Sci Fi Channel.

The five movies, budgeted at about $2 million apiece, will fuel Sci Fi’s initiative to premiere new movies, targeting the cabler’s male viewers, every Saturday night.

“Devil’s Pass,” written by Lewis Abernathy and exec produced by Chuck Simon, is scheduled to debut on Sci Fi in August or September. It follows an escaped convict (Campbell) and a human-killing alien who get stranded at an airport. Convict teams up with a femme pilot (Masterson) to save the world from the evil alien.

All five pics are being produced by Amberlake Films and distributed by USA Cable Entertainment.

Once “Devil’s Pass” wraps, “Do or Die,” written and directed by David Jackson, will roll. Nigel Bennett has been cast as the lead in that film, which is set in a world that exists after a comet infects the population with Rapid Age Disease.

Third pic to shoot is “Control Factor,” about a government mind-control project, written by John Dombrow. “Control Factor” also is exec produced by Simon.

Beyond that, a pic called “Threshold,” written by Kim LeMasters, and “Deathlands,” based on James Axler’s novels, will lense. Which of these two will go first has not been determined.

All but “Devil’s Pass” are expected to premiere in 2003.