david j. moore chats with Dylan “Hornswoggle” Postl, star of Leprechaun: Origins, at the San Diego Comic-Con…
At four feet, four inches, Dylan “Hornswoggle” Postl might not seem like a likely candidate for professional wrestling, but he’s made his mark in WWE wrestling with a Cruiserweight Champion title on Smackdown! (2007) and other physical feats on WWE Raw. This year he’s made his crossover into films with an appearance in Muppets Most Wanted, and now with the WWE / Lionsgate joint venture of the horror film Leprechaun: Origins, which hopes to reignite interest in the horror franchise, which starred Warwick Davis. A separate, unrelated entity that stands on its own, Origins purports to be a straight-up horror film, with full-tilt gore, violence, and action, courtesy of the evil Leprechaun, played by the one and only Hornswoggle.
david j. moore: You’re coming from a long line of guys who’ve crossed over from the world of professional wrestling and making your film debut in Leprechaun: Origins. Talk about some of the challenges you were faced with in taking on this movie.
Dylan Postl: As much of the challenge of me being in WWE period … I’m not six foot, I’m not 250 pounds … I should never be where I’m at today. I’m just a kid from Oshkosh, Wisconsin … then doing a crossover and doing acting … man, it’s … it’s insane. How I did it, how it worked out, how everything came together, but it’s awesome.
djm: Was playing the Leprechaun ever a dream for you?
DP: Let me word this as good as I can. I play a Leprechaun every day of my life. But … playing this Leprechaun is quite different. It’s something I never could have dreamed and never would have dreamed because it’s something so out of my realm. I’ll go on the record and say I’m not a horror fan. I never claimed to be. I watch a random comedy here and there. Doing this movie got me into horror films. I’m all right with them now. I enjoy them now. In Hollywood, there will always be a role for someone like me. I thought, “It’d be cool to do one.” I never thought I would, but to do one, doing this, doing Leprechaun was amazing. A dream come true. I’m the only guy in WWE history to do two movies in a year. That’s it. That’s me tooting my own horn. Toot, toot. So I’m kind of a bigger deal than The Rock. (Laughing.)
djm: Did you watch any of the Leprechaun films with Warwick Davis to prepare for the film?
DP: Yup. I watched all of them. No, really: I’ve never seen any of them. I was talking to the director, and I told him, “I’ve never seen any of these before.” And he said, “Good. We’re not doing those.” I watched our film for the first time last night, and it is nothing what I expected. It is nothing like what Leprechaun fans are expecting. It is so much better. It was so different. I think the cult fans are going to be upset at first, and then they’re going to love it. It’s a true horror film. No limericks or jokes. It’s a gory horror film.
djm: Would you be down for sequels?
DP: I hope I can do sequels. We as entertainers have to evolve. We can’t always be the same characters forever. I’m usually the dick – it’s fun. I like people booing me. As weird as that may sound. It’s easy to slap hands and kiss babies. It’s fun being bad. I love it. I’ve stolen the show being bad.
djm: Talk about bringing your physicality to the role in this film.
DP: Ah … I’ve lost some weight since the film. I was about 30 pounds heavier. The first thing they had me do … I spent about two and a half hours getting into makeup. It’s heavy. The first thing they had me do with all this makeup on was to run up this hill. I told the director, “Zach, what’s going on?” He said, “We’re just getting this out of the way to see how your movements are.” I said, “I know how my movements are. I know how I’ll move up this hill. I can only do it one time!” Well, three hours later, I’m still running up this hill. But it was nice to get out of the way. It was a very physical movie. I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I cussed him out, though. They had a stunt double for me in this one other scene, and seeing it played back for those two seconds … I cussed him out because he wouldn’t let me take this risk on that other two-second scene. In reality, I did a lot of other physical stuff on this movie. I’m 28, and I feel 48 sometimes.
djm: Did you get any advice from your colleagues on how to approach your first film?
DP: You know what, John Cena is one of my best friends. I called him and said, “Hey, I’m doing Leprechaun.” “Okay.” I was like, “Okay, that’s not exciting.” He said, “Be ready. It’s work. It’s different.” And it was. It’s different than anything I’ve done. The payoff is so much more amazing. It’s not initial payoff, but being a WWE superstar going into movies … you punch a guy in the face, you’re going to get a reaction. In a movie, you punch a guy in the face, you wait eight seconds for the scene to be over and you get to see it on the monitor and then you have to do it over again. It’s very different. You’ve got to really believe in what you’re doing and that you’re doing the right thing. Is that what the director wanted, or did they want something else? But I like it. It’s easier on the body. That’s for sure! I would love to do more, man.
djm: You’re bringing with you a fan base. Is there anything you’d like to address to them?
DP: Don’t hate me. They tore me to shreds on Twitter when WWE announced that I would be playing the Leprechaun. Ah, man. My Twitter blew up. “How could you do this to Warwick? You’re spitting in his face!” He even Tweeted, “They’re redoing it, but I have nothing to do with it.” But we’re not redoing it. We’re making it our own. It’s not Leprechaun in the Hood Part 7. It’s the origins of it. The only thing similar about it is the title. It couldn’t be more different. That’s why I’m nervous. I’m nervous about the cult fans. I hope when they see it, they’ll like it and maybe think, I like this guy even more. I’m excited for my Twitter feed. I like reading the bad comments. They make my day.
djm: If you were to make another movie, would it have to be a WWE film, or can it be something else?
DP: It should be a WWE movie, but Muppets Most Wanted was not a WWE film, so there. We will break the records for DVD sales. I believe Kane has the record for the first See No Evil. We’re gonna break it. Guaranteed.
djm: Do you think you and Warwick could meet up at RAW to promote the film or challenge each other?
DP: You know what? Ah, man. It would be awesome. It would be really cool to get him on the show for that reason. It’s a WrestleMania moment, it’s not a RAW moment. Man, I watched his show Life’s Too Short and I love it. He’s a funny man, but he can’t come up to my waist. He is short! I couldn’t believe it. I would love to meet him. Part of me feels bad for not seeing his versions. Should I have studied what he did or taken notes? But I didn’t. We made an amazing movie on our own.
Many thanks to Dylan Postl for taking the time for this interview.
Leprechaun: Origins is set to open on August 26th, with a cast that includes Dylan “Hornswoggle” Postl (Muppets Most Wanted), Stephanie Bennett (Grave Encounters 2), Andrew Dunbar (Alien Trespass), Melissa Roxburgh (Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days) and Brendan Fletcher (Freddy vs Jason). Watch the trailer here.
david j. moore is a contributing writer to Fangoria, FilmFax, Lunchmeat and VideoScope Magazines. His book WORLD GONE WILD: A SURVIVOR’S GUIDE TO POST-APOCALYPTIC MOVIES was published this year.