John Boyega Returns to British Creature Features with ‘A Spriggan’

While we're still waiting on 'Attack the Block II,' we'll settle on another variety of beast for Boyega to slay.
Attack The Block Sword

Allow it. Having already freed London of a ravenous alien invasion in Attack the Block, the time has come for John Boyega to return to the U.K. as another monster slayer. He’s walked with Jedis and Jaegers, and as much fun as we have with those franchise stars, our Boyega obsession began and remains with Moses, the 15-year-old hoodie samurai that rose into legend after defending his neighborhood from extraterrestrial furballs.

According to Deadline, the Star Wars rebel is steering his Upper Room production company towards a new project featuring a very British beastie. A Spriggan is a dark fantasy horror that focuses on a widowed mother seeking solstice in her father’s country cabin. There she is overwhelmed by supernatural creatures straight from British folklore. Spriggans are devilish, troll-like beings that taunt any human foolish enough to cross their path. They can be mischievous or downright deadly.

A Spriggan stems from the mind of writer/director Keir Burrows (Anti Matter) and produced by Josephine Rose (Slaughterhouse Rulez). There is no word if there is a role ready for executive producer Boyega. In fact, the film is just starting the casting process. We’re obviously quite some time away from seeing these demons come into fruition.

What we can get excited about is the involvement of special effects supervisor, Neil Corbould. The man began his career working on films like Superman, An American Werewolf in London, and The Elephant Man. Having cut his teeth as a crewman on some of the most amazing works of practical effects, Corbould went on to form his own company. He received Academy Award recognition for Gravity and Superman Returns, which led to spearheading the budgetary monstrosity of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

If you’re looking for proof of Corbould’s creature talent than look no further than Alien: Covenant and Event Horizon. Who cares about plot and character when the monsters look so damn gorgeous? Those familiar with the more recent incarnations of Castlevania and The Witcher video games already understand what a tremendous nuisance Spriggans can be. In those gameworlds, these creatures are grotesque goblin men desperate for big screen adaptation. Corbould in partnership with an actor like Doug Jones could easily craft a nightmare as memorable as The Pale Man from Pan’s Labyrinth.

In last year’s Anti Matter, Keir Burrows revealed a filmmaker who could make a lot from very little. That micro-sci-fi flick pulled off wormholes and dimensional travel with little more than a wing and a prayer. Now, with a little more money and Boyega’s confidence backing Burrows’ vision, A Spriggan has the potential to stand out in an already crowded monster movie genre.

Building on the opportunity that Star Wars afforded him, Boyega is hoping to form his own mini-empire in the world of cinema. He dipped his producer toes into Pacific Rim: Uprising and the money earned from that experience can probably feed a dozen other projects. If A Spriggan can craft the same potent combination of horror and human emotion expressed in Attack the Block, then genre fans are in for a serious treat. If you haven’t already experienced Attack the Block then do yourself a damn favor and get to it. Finn is all well and good, but he’s no Moses. Trust.

Brad Gullickson: Brad Gullickson is a Weekly Columnist for Film School Rejects and Senior Curator for One Perfect Shot. When not rambling about movies here, he's rambling about comics as the co-host of Comic Book Couples Counseling. Hunt him down on Twitter: @MouthDork. (He/Him)