Slasher movie killers follow a general set of rules, first and foremost of which is they must be big and imposing, and/or armed with highly effective weaponry. The Leprechaun series of horror movies flew in the face of this rule, featuring Warwick Davis as the titular creature, a small, green-clad fairy demon who hunts down and murders anyone foolish enough to steal his pot of gold.
The franchise saw Warwick Davis play the evil Leprechaun in six movies. When the seventh movie hired a new actor, Mark Jones, who wrote and directed the first Leprechaun movie, reached out to Davis with a daring idea for a separate series featuring a Vampire-Leprechaun hybrid. Jones explained the nature of the project in a recent interview with Bloody Disgusting.
“I keep in touch with Warwick Davis, and he’s great. When [the seventh Leprechaun movie] was on the boards, I called Warwick and he said, ‘Yeah, they’re not going to use me.’ I said, ‘No way, you created a whole leprechaun character. You know…we should do something together.’ I said, ‘Well, what have they not done? You know, everybody’s into vampires, obviously Leprechaun is popular. Well…if a vampire bit a leprechaun, he would turn them into a ‘vamprechaun’.”
And thus was born the idea for the “Vamprechaun”. According to Jones, the aim was to create a rival Leprechaun franchise featuring the original Leprechaun actor, as he explained to Davis, “Let’s go toe-to-toe with Leprechaun here. You can create a whole new character. You’ll be a little person vampire, but you’ll have leprechaun overtones. You’ll be green, you’ll still have red hair, and we’ll put you in a vampire costume. So it would be an original creation from two public domain characters.’ And he said, ‘I’d love to.’ He thought it was a good idea.”
So what was the imagined mythology for this dastardly new creature? As it turns out, quite an involved one. In the distant past, Vampires and Leprechauns lived side by side. Leprechauns were hunted down by Vampires in large numbers for their powerful green blood.
This forced the Leprechauns to create a new stash of gold coins covered in the blood of Vampires that can protect against the creatures of the night. The special gold coins wind up in America in present times, where a Leprechaun sets out to find them. Unfortunately, during his search, the Leprechaun gets bitten by Vampire bats, which turns him into the dreaded Vamprechaun. This new breed of Leprechaun would then proceed to inflict terror on the human population using a unique set of abilities, as explained by Jones.
“He’s trying to get his gold back, and the gold has powers, and he’s got different powers than just a normal leprechaun. But, you know, he also bites people on the ankles instead of the neck, because he can’t reach their necks… He can only be killed with a red four-leaf lover, and there are no such things. So they have to figure out how to make one by cross-planting things. They have to destroy this vamprechaun. But, of course, it’s wide open for a sequel.”
Unfortunately, plans for the movie fell through after Davis backed out of the project. Still, Jones thinks the film can be made one day, with or without the actor, as he explains, “I’d love to have Warwick. But he’s certainly not locked in and attached. And it would work without him. But if Lionsgate wants to make a new deal for Vamprechaun, then I’d certainly be happy to talk with them.” We’ll have to wait and see.