One of horror's most ridiculous (and yet longest-running) franchises comes back soon with Leprechaun Returns, and here's the official trailer. The horror genre is full of preposterous villains, ranging all the way from an evil genie in Wishmaster to a demon-possessed clock in Amityville: It's About Time. There's also a haunted laundry press in Stephen King's The Mangler, and a murderous Gingerdead Man voiced by Gary Busey. Yet, few have managed to last as long as the Leprechaun.
Originally played by Warwick Davis (also famous for his roles in Willow and the Star Wars franchise), the Leprechaun first went on a gold-seeking killing spree in 1993's original film. While far from a critical darling, it performed well enough to earn a sequel, and also featured a pre-Friends Jennifer Aniston in her feature film debut. Leprechaun 2 saw the titular creature search for a bride, 3 sent him to Las Vegas, and 4 saw him rocketed into space. Parts 5 and 6 sent Lep to "the hood," and saw him bust out a hilariously awful rap. After 2003's sixth film, Davis departed the franchise, seemingly ending it.
That was until 2014, when WWE Films of all people attempted to reboot the franchise with the terrible Leprechaun: Origins, starring diminutive WWE wrestler Hornswoggle in the lead. Unfortunately, basically everyone hated it, and most fans now disavow it entirely, since it was narratively unconnected to the prior films. Now, Syfy is set to take a crack at reviving the series, via new entry Leprechaun Returns. While Davis is still gone, new actor Linden Porco looks and sounds the part pretty well. Check out the film's full trailer below, as first unveiled by EW.
As is made clear by the trailer, Leprechaun Returns' setup in many ways recalls Blumhouse's recent Halloween sequel. Leprechaun Returns functions as a direct sequel to only the original Leprechaun film, returns to its setting, and brings back a character, that being Ozzie Jones (Mark Holton). Sadly, Aniston seemingly couldn't be convinced to pull a Jamie Lee Curtis and return to reprise her role. Then again, Friends made her an extremely rich woman, so it's not like she needs the work.
For the most part, Porco seems to be having lots of fun with the role, which is entirely appropriate. One of the main reasons many hated Leprechaun: Origins was that it tried to be a serious horror film, which isn't what anyone wants from a movie about a killer Irish fairy. While the Syfy labeling might put off many, here's hoping Leprechaun Returns is just what the franchise needs to recapture its sense of fun.
Leprechaun Returns hits VOD and digital on December 11, and will air on Syfy in March 2019.