Leprechaun returning without Warwick Davis for new horror sequel in 2019

Leprechaun returning without Warwick Davis for new horror sequel in 2019

THE Irish-themed horror movie franchise Leprechaun is returning for a new outing in 2019, minus original star Warwick Davis.

Leprechaun Returns is being created by Syfy, the cable TV channel behind the Sharknado films, and was officially announced with a teaser trailer released to coincide with St. Patrick's Day.

To the uninitiated: the Leprechaun franchise is a series of horror comedy films chronicling the efforts of a murderous and malevolent leprechaun who resorts to extreme and bloody methods to reclaim his stolen gold.

In the new 41-second clip, the titular leprechaun can be seen flipping a coin while performing one of his trademark rhymes.

"My fingers are itching, I'm killing for more," he crows. "Why, let's try our luck and bet on me gold. If it lands on tails, I'll do as me told; but heads? I'll start a new killing spree."

Steven Kostanski, who directed well-received horror effort The Void, is helming the project with Leprechaun Returns slated to arrive in March 2019.

The first Leprechaun film was released back in 1993 and starred Jennifer Aniston prior to the actress landing her breakthrough role as Rachel Green on Friends.

It also featured Mark Holton who is set to return for this latest instalment which will be directly linked to the original.

This time around the green goblin is menacing a group of defenceless sorority girls who accidentally awaken the leprechaun with the construction of their brand-new sorority house.

It's the eighth movie in the franchise to date. Davis has played the leprechaun on six separate occasions, with notable highlights including Leprechaun 4: In Space and Leprechaun In The Hood, where he got to try out a bit of rapping.

In 2014, Lionsgate and WWE Studios teamed up to reboot the franchise with the more sombre prequel effort Leprechaun: Origins.

The film saw Davis replaced with retired wrestler Dylan 'Hornswoggle' Postl and debuted to disastrous reviews.

Syfy is now taking the franchise back to its roots but there's still no place in the production for Davis, who has been replaced by Linden Porco in the main antagonist role.

Davis has always maintained a strong appreciation for the franchise, despite the diminishing returns generated by the sequels.

"I love the Leprechaun movies and I love that people always ask me about them," Davis told Dread Central back in 2012.

"We had no idea when we were making that first movie that there'd even be one sequel, let alone five ... people still love them and talk about them a lot. That's pretty incredible."

Leprechaun Returns will debut on Syfy next year.