Warwick Davis talks leprechauns, Johnny Depp, and his desire to “just keep working”


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You might not recognize the name the moment you see it, but rest assured that you know Warwick Davis. You’ve seen him in some of your favorite films without even realizing you’ve seen him. The veteran actor has played Wicket the Ewok in “Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi,” Willow himself in the beloved film of the same name, Professor Filius Flitwick in the “Harry Potter” series and, the evil Leprechaun in all six of the “Leprechaun” films. On the eve of St. Patrick’s Day (a Leprechaun’s favorite holiday, of course) and the Video on Demand release of the cult classic “Leprechaun” movies, Davis was kind enough to sit down with us to chat about Johnny Depp, the little green guy he can’t get enough of, and how “Life’s Too Short.”

IFC: You’ve done six “Leprechaun” films now. I’d say that’s a pretty successful franchise. Do you have a personal favorite from the series?

Warwick Davis: I think number one’s cool because it was the one that kind of started it all and at that point, you know, who knew we would go on to make six. It’s amazing. I’m particularly fond of three and four. I like the comedy element in them as I’m fond of comedy anyway. I like the character in those. He’s a horror character but that sense of fun that he has, those films really bring that out quite nicely. I’d say one, three, and four.

IFC: The films tend to swing back and forth between horror and comedy. Do you consider the series to be more horror or comedy based?

DAVIS: I always described them as horror-comedy, but it’s very hard to say whether they’re more horror or comedy. What’s great about it is that there’s that contrast you get then. The comedy scenes are actually funnier and the horror is probably more horrific because it’s more unexpected in a way. If you just did a horror tone throughout an entire movie you almost, as an audience, can get a little bit used to it. But if you’re laughing one minute and, you know, somebody’s doing something quite horrific the next minute, it’s a little more shocking.

IFC: The series definitely seems to lean a little heavier towards comedy in the last few films. They seem to be having a little more fun along with the audience. Do you feel like, as you grew into your character more and more, it became more fun for you as well?

DAVIS: When you do films that have multiple sequels, you develop a character for a film. It was ever so fun on the first one because it’s really about finding this character from the script. I was given quite a free reign on what I wanted to bring to the character. Creating the voice and everything else. When you then get to do that again in the sequel, you feel more comfortable in that skin. You kind of know the character and then you’re given this new script and this new arena to play in and it’s just more fun then because the foundation is very solid within you from the character. You have your backstory from the previous film and then you go on to do a third and a fourth, it becomes so much more comfortable and so much easier. You then can explore the character further. It kind of happened to me in “Harry Potter” as well in a similar way. You end up knowing the character so well that it becomes such a lovely job to just roll onto the set.

IFC: So, are you ready for more fun? Is there going to be another “Leprechaun” film?

DAVIS: Listen, I’d love to do another one. This is probably – apart from “is there going to be a ‘Willow 2’” – this is the next most popular question: “When are we going to see another Leprechaun film?” There’s so many kinds of rumors and ideas flying around about what it could be.

I mean, I personally pitched “Leprechaun 7” to Johnny Depp. I said, “Look, obviously “Pirates of the Caribbean” has dried up a bit for you now. Why don’t we reboot that and “Leprechaun” at the same time by combining the two franchises together so that you’re sailing around on your boat and you’ve stolen my gold, perhaps, and I come along to try and get it back. And the movie rolls around this struggle between you and me.” And he kind of looked at me a bit blankly. (Laughter). I think that’d be great, though, don’t you?

IFC: Was this on the set of “Life’s Too Short?”

DAVIS: Yeah, “Life’s Too Short.” And I did actually, sincerely that’s exactly how it went. I pitched him exactly that. I think it’s good. Obviously pirates love gold. Leprechauns love gold. It’s a match made in heaven and it should happen.

IFC: At this point in your career, you’ve played an Ewok, a Goblin, a talking mouse, a leprechaun, a professor, and now a fictionalized version of yourself. What’s left to do? What’s next for you?

DAVIS: I’ve always managed to fulfill a lot of my dreams in acting. I’ve always wanted to do comedy and then “Life’s Too Short” comes up, which is the ultimate kind of way to express that desire.

I just love working. I think it’s something that people say oh, they want to be famous, they want to be an actor, and I always say, “Why do you want to do that?” They want the money. They want the fame. But that’s not really the right reason to do it. You’ve got to love acting and that’s true for me. I love the idea of getting on stage and getting in front of a camera. Whatever it’s for.

So, I think I’d be grateful for the next job. I always am. And I always consider everything I do to be the last thing I do. I’m never disappointed and I’m always excited when the phone rings and someone else says “Would you come and have a go and do this for us? Play this character?” and what have you. I just want to keep working.

The original “Leprechaun” is now available in High Definition on Digital Download, Video On Demand and Pay-Per-View just in time for your St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. The third and sixth installment in the series are also available.

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Bro and Tell

BFFs And Night Court For Sports

Bromance and Comeuppance On Two New Comedy Crib Series

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“Silicon Valley meets Girls meets black male educators with lots of unrealized potential.”

That’s how Carl Foreman Jr. and Anthony Gaskins categorize their new series Frank and Lamar which joins Joe Schiappa’s Sport Court in the latest wave of new series available now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. To better acquaint you with the newbies, we went right to the creators for their candid POVs. And they did not disappoint. Here are snippets of their interviews:

Frank and Lamar


IFC: How would you describe Frank and Lamar to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Carl: Best bros from college live and work together teaching at a fancy Manhattan private school, valiantly trying to transition into a more mature phase of personal and professional life while clinging to their boyish ways.

IFC: And to a friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Carl: The same way, slightly less coherent.

Anthony: I’d probably speak about it with much louder volume, due to the bar which would probably be playing the new Kendrick Lamar album. I might also include additional jokes about Carl, or unrelated political tangents.

Carl: He really delights in randomly slandering me for no reason. I get him back though. Our rapport on the page, screen, and in real life, comes out of a lot of that back and forth.

IFC: In what way is Frank and Lamar a poignant series for this moment in time?
Carl: It tells a story I feel most people aren’t familiar with, having young black males teach in a very affluent white world, while never making it expressly about that either. Then in tackling their personal lives, we see these three-dimensional guys navigate a pivotal moment in time from a perspective I feel mainstream audiences tend not to see portrayed.

Anthony: I feel like Frank and Lamar continues to push the envelope within the genre by presenting interesting and non stereotypical content about people of color. The fact that this show brought together so many talented creative people, from the cast and crew to the producers, who believe in the project, makes the work that much more intentional and truthful. I also think it’s pretty incredible that we got to employ many of our friends!

Sport Court

Sport Court gavel

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Joe: SPORT COURT follows Judge David Linda, a circuit court judge assigned to handle an ad hoc courtroom put together to prosecute rowdy fan behavior in the basement of the Hartford Ultradome. Think an updated Night Court.

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Joe: Remember when you put those firecrackers down that guy’s pants at the baseball game? It’s about a judge who works in a court in the stadium that puts you in jail right then and there. I know, you actually did spend the night in jail, but imagine you went to court right that second and didn’t have to get your brother to take off work from GameStop to take you to your hearing.

IFC: Is there a method to your madness when coming up with sports fan faux pas?
Joe: I just think of the worst things that would ruin a sporting event for everyone. Peeing in the slushy machine in open view of a crowd seemed like a good one.

IFC: Honestly now, how many of the fan transgressions are things you’ve done or thought about doing?
Joe: I’ve thought about ripping out a whole row of chairs at a theater or stadium, so I would have my own private space. I like to think of that really whenever I have to sit crammed next to lots of people. Imagine the leg room!

Check out the full seasons of Frank and Lamar and Sport Court now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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