Darren Lynn Bousman made his feature directorial debut 20 years ago and has since gone on to helm thirteen movies including the three highest-grossing installments in the Saw franchise, along with most recent entry Spiral, but he’s still only 42 years old, which is youthful by the standards of the industry, especially for someone who already boasts such a wealth of experience.
The filmmaker has worked almost exclusively in the horror genre, but despite such a track record of success, he still can’t seem to convince anyone to hand him the keys to Leprechaun. Bousman has hardly been shy in voicing his desire to tackle a fresh take on the cult classic series, and in a new interview, he admitted that it’s gotten to the stage where people think he’s joking, even though he’s been trying to get the project off the ground for himself to direct for close to two decades.
“They do not take me seriously about it, I think they think I’m f*cking with them, so much so that I had a friends and family screening the Wednesday before Spiral came out and one of the execs walked over to me and said, ‘Are you f*cking with us? Are you serious?’. I was like, ‘How many more times do I have to say it, I started talking about it during Saw II. I was 24 years old, now I’m 42, and I’m still f*cking talking about it. That is the longest-running joke in the world if I’m joking’. No, I absolutely want to do the Leprechaun franchise, and since I’ve been saying it, they’ve redone it four times without me. You know what, I don’t know what to say at this point, there’s only so many times you can beg.”
The 1993 original instantly became a cult favorite when it was first released, and is also notable for being the first credited movie role of Jennifer Aniston’s career, while Warwick Davis would go on to bury himself under the title character’s makeup in the next five sequels. Leprechaun: Origins rebooted the flagging franchise in 2014 before legacy entry Leprechaun Returns recruited original star Mark Holton, but in the broadest of terms, it’s long since descended into self-parody and farce.
It’s strange for a proven horror talent like Bousman to keep being ignored when he’s repeatedly clamored for the opportunity to reinvent Leprechaun, but with Spiral‘s box office haul taking Saw into the billion-dollar club, maybe now he’ll finally have the clout to get it into active development.