The Leprechaun Horror Franchise Is Ready For Its Comeback As Lionsgate Eyes A Reboot

To date, there have been eight films in the "Leprechaun" series. The first film, released in 1993, starred Warwick Davis as the title character, an evil, smiling immortal monster with an obsession with his pot o' gold, a shoe fetish, and a propensity for murder. Davis would return for "Leprechaun 2" (1994), "Leprechaun 3" (1995), "Leprechaun 4: In Space" (1997), "Leprechaun in the Hood" (2000), and "Leprechaun: Back 2 tha Hood" (2003). Although parts 3 and 4 (both directed by stalwart exploitation veteran Brian Trenchard-Smith) are passably entertaining, and "In the Hood" is crazy enough to be distracting, the series is pretty unilaterally terrible, better suited for all-night marathons and booze-forward film parties than casual enjoyment. 

"Leprechaun" was first rebooted in 2014 with Zach Lipovsky's "Leprechaun: Origins," a monster movie starring professional wrestler Dylan Postl, aka WWE's Hornswoggle, as the title monster. They needn't have bothered with a celebrity in the role, as he doesn't speak and is hardly seen. The series was rebooted a second time in 2018 with "Leprechaun Returns," a direct sequel to the 1993 film that ignored the previous installments in the (snicker) continuity. That film starred Linden Porco as the title monster. 

According to sources at Bloody Disgusting, Lionsgate is currently seeking pitches for a third "Leprechaun" reboot.

Previous attempt

Although the "Leprechaun" movies are commonly derided (the Rotten Tomatoes approval ratings for the series so far run at 27%, 6%, unrated, 17%, 33%, 20%, 0%, and 50% respectively), it is a series that seems unwilling to end. To quote Hunter S. Thompson, they are too weird to live, but too rare to die. Davis, now 52, has obviously had fun in the role, having been allowed to ham it up and make silly jokes. In part 5, he raps. Interest, it seems, will persist. 

According to Bloody Disgusting, Darren Lynn Bousman ("Saw" parts II through IV) once pitched an idea to Lionsgate about a return to "Leprechaun" with the intent that Davis return to the role:

"I would make a more direct sequel to the Leprechaun franchise. I would not reboot it. I don't want to do that. I would demand that Warwick Davis come back. I wouldn't do it without him ...I would not try to change the tone. I would make it equally as bats***, bonkers crazy. It would be between the first film and "Back 2 tha Hood." It would be somewhere in that tonal frame. It got really ridiculous as they went on, but that ridiculousness is what made them fun."

Perhaps an Irish filmmaker could take charge this time. A "Leprechaun" movie directed by Jim Sheridan, or Kenneth Branagh, or Neil Jordan, or perhaps an animated film from Tomm Moore would be appropriate. Do you suppose Daniel Day-Lewis would come out of retirement to play the movie's Van Helsing?