Is James Lincolnfields Inspired by a Real Serial Killer?

Helmed by Padraig Reynolds and starring Vanessa Grasse and Cole Vigue in central roles, ‘Open 24 Hours’ centers upon Mary, the ex-girlfriend of serial killer James Lincolnfields AKA “Rain Ripper.” Mary starts her new job at a 24-hour gas station while battling her intrusive paranoid thoughts and hallucinations about James and the murders he forced her to witness. During the overnight shift of Mary’s first day, a series of unnerving events unfold in which Mary’s past catches up to her and threatens to ruin her future.

Initially, James only appears as a part of Mary’s paranoid hallucinations. Therefore, by the time he materializes in the real world, viewers and Mary alike are left to question his existence. As such, James acts as the gorey and mysterious element of the 2018 slasher horror thriller film. Due to James Lincolnfields role as a local serial killer, viewers might wonder about the existence of a similar serial killer in the real world. If so, here is everything you need to know about the origin of James Lincolnfields from ‘Open 24 Hours.’

James Lincolnfields is Not Based on an Actual Killer

No, James Lincolnfields is not based on a real serial killer. In ‘Open 24 Hours,’ Mary finds out that her boyfriend, James is a serial killer after finding hacked-up dead body parts in her apartment’s flooded basement. Following this discovery, James threatens to kill Mary and her family if she reports him to the cops. Afterward, he continues his killings and makes Mary watch as he murders each victim. As a serial killer, James’ mode of operating is his tendency to kill women when it rains in order to “cleanse their souls.”

Each time it rains and James prepares to kill someone, James calls Mary and plays her an old song, “Raindrops,” to let her know he’s about to kill someone. As such, James and Mary get their nicknames “Rain Ripper” and “The Watcher,” respectively, by the press. Interestingly, director and screenwriter Padraig Reynolds crafted James Lincolnfields’ character from his own imagination without drawing direct inspiration from any particular real-world serial killer.

Discussing the origin of the character of James in an interview with Clout Communications, Reynolds recalled, “An ex-girlfriend asked me one night if I was a serial killer, who would I be?” Reynolds recalled “I said the Rain Ripper, and I would only kill when it rained. She thought that was really scary, and I kept that element for years and plugged it into Open 24 Hours.” As such, Reynolds didn’t craft his Rain Ripper serial killer after any specific individual or story.

Having said that, Lam Kor-wan, one of Hong Kong’s most notorious serial killers, sometimes known as “The Rainy Night Butcher,” does possess some resemblance to the Rain Ripper from ‘Open 24 Hours.’ Lam Kor-wan killed several women, and many of his killings intentionally or not coincided with cold, rainy weather. Nevertheless, The Rainy Night Butcher doesn’t have any correlation to The Rain Ripper despite their somewhat similar attributes as serial killers.

Instead, when talking about real-life inspirations, Reynolds cited Peter Sutcliffe, known as The Yorkshire Ripper, who was an infamous serial killer in 1970s England. Sutcliffe claimed to be on a mission from god and targeted female sex workers as his victims. In his five years terrorizing Yorkshire, Sutcliffe killed 13 women and attempted to murder several others. While talking about the basis of the “Rain Ripper” in any historical figure, Reynolds stated, “The killing with the hammer part came from The Yorkshire Ripper, who used to kill off his victims with a variety of blunt objects.”

Taking the aforementioned points into consideration, we infer that ultimately, James Lincolnfields AKA the “Rain Ripper” is not based on a real serial killer. Although some similarities can be found between James’ killing sprees and real-life events, his character and storyline are simply works of fiction envisioned and executed brilliantly by the creative mind of Padraig Reynolds, who is known for his works on horror films like ‘Rites of Spring’ and ‘The Devil’s Dolls.’

Read More: Open 24 Hours Ending, Explained