How One Dumb Joke Created Horror Movies' Weirdest Trend
Despite being a bunch of nonsense drummed up thanks to “several bottles of wine,” the story of The Amityville Horror is still inspiring movies today. Due mainly to the fact that the word “Amityville” isn’t copyrighted, we’ve gotten a truly staggering number of loosely-connected Amityville Horror movies over the years. Last year alone dropped Amityville Vampire and the werewolf-based The Amityville Moon. Just give us a few years, and the possibility of a full-blown Amityville Monster Mash becomes a reality. No trend is dumb or weird enough.
Now the series has made the next logical step into madness, with the new Amityville in Space which, judging from the trailer, is literally about the Amityville Horror house blasting off into outer space, thanks to visual effects that were presumably budgeted in slices of Costco pizza.
Shifting the action to outer space has become the go-to move for overly-protracted horror franchises. Most famously there was 2001’s Jason X, the 10 entry in the Friday the 13th series, which found Jason Voorhees waking up in the year 2455 and terrorizing the crew of a spaceship – not to mention holographic horny camp counselors.
But five years before Jason went full Star Trek: Voyager Fan Film, another horror character pioneered the outer space slasher movie: Lubdan the Leprechaun.
Leprechaun 4: In Space is basically Aliens if you replaced all the Xenomorphs with a wisecracking, disquietingly horny, mythological character from Irish folklore and the screenplay with used toilet paper.
Where did this highly influential/completely insane idea come from? It all began as a dumb joke at an office Christmas party. In order to liven up their annual holiday gathering, the studio behind the Leprechaun series created a mock poster for Apollo 13 with star Warwick Davis’ face Photoshopped into it. For some reason, a real-life human being thought that this one-off joke should be the premise of a legit feature film, and thus this ridiculous trend was born.
You (yes, you) should follow JM on Twitter!
Top Image: Wild Eye Releasing/New Line Cinema