No one could have guessed when Leprechaun was released in 1993 that it would become one of the most objectively successful horror franchises of the 21st Century. Fuel by a debut film performance by a young Jennifer Aniston (who was enjoying immense success as part of the ensemble cast of Friends on TV), the film spawned 5 sequels and a darker, gritty reboot from WWE studios. The titular Leprechaun may be dismissed by many, but in the 2000’s, he’s thrived while studios can’t make a successful reboot of Friday the 13th or A Nightmare on Elm Street to save their lives.
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There’s more going on in the Leprechaun franchise than you might realize, and to that point, we’d like to direct you to the video below. Mark Bishop is our go-to source for horror movie trivia delivered with a hefty dose of satirical and comic wit, and his examination of Leprechaun is especially choice. If this doesn’t convince you that the impish gold-seeker is a force to be reckoned with, nothing will.
If you can’t stream, the 10 golden nuggets of trivia are listed and briefly summarized below the video. Enjoy!
Official Synopsis: Search to the end of the rainbow for a pot of gold and there you shall discover the secrets one of one of the most bizarre horror movie series ever!
The Unique Cast: In addition to Jennifer Aniston, 1993’s Leprechaun stars Mark Holton (Chubby from Teen Wolf), and Warwick Davis. Davis is one of the most prolific actors in the Star Wars franchise having played an Ewok and many other diminutive characters; he’s also appears in Harry Potter films and was the star of 1988’s Willow.
Warwick Davis played a child-friendly Leprechaun in a film released after 1993’s Leprechaun: A Very Unlucky Leprechaun was released in in 1998. Official Synopsis: A very unlucky leprechaun over comes great adventures.
Insane Sequels: There are 5 sequels in total that see the titular Leprechaun spreading chaos from Vegas to outer space; the last two involved the Leprechaun in “the hood” with an emphasis on stoner comedy and hip-hop music. The sequels are: Leprechaun 2 (1994), Leprechaun 3 (1995), Leprechaun 4: In Space (1997), Leprechaun in the Hood (2000), and Leprechaun: Back 2 tha Hood (2003).
The Dark & Gritty Reboot: Leprechaun: Origins was released in 2014; it was a serious reboot, starring Dylan ‘Hornswoggle’ Postl as the demonic Irish fiend.
The original Leprechaun (1993) grossed $9M; that’s a lot of gold!
Leprechaun was one of the very first films of 1993, released on January 8th.
Not-So Lucky Charms: General Mills initially agreed to allow the film’s producers to use Lucky Charms cereal in a gag scene. When they realized the movie was a horror flick, however, permission was revoked. An edit was made featuring a fictional cereal called Lucky Clovers.
Warwick was under contract at Lucasfilm when he was offered the lead in Leprechaun; he had to be given a contractual exemption in order to participate.
Diminutive thespians Deep Roy (The NeverEnding Story) and Tony Cox (Bad Santa) were the Leprechaun’s stunt doubles.
Leprechaun was originally conceived as a kids’ movie, something along the lines of Gremlins and Goonies. The decision to take a more horror-centric approach was made after filming had already commenced.
About Minty Comedic Arts on YouTube: Satirical, political, and pop cultural look at comedy which intellectually challenges our perceptions.
Another interesting fact that Mr. Minty missed in his research, however, is the fact that there was almost a Candyman vs Leprechaun cross-over movie; thankfully, the idea was scrapped when Tony Todd refused to participate. Read all about that near catastrophe in the link below.