Sep 18 2008
The first Ghostbusters was a masterclass in comedy and chemistry between actors. Murray and Aykroyd stole the show and were ably backed up by a fantastic cast in Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver and Rick Moranis. Ivan Reitman directed a movie that was an instant comic classic.
Five years later, they followed it up with a hyper version of the original. A stronger script, better use of the supporting cast (Annie Potts as Janine and Peter MacNicol as Janosz are excellent). They even managed to top the marshmallow man finish of the original by bringing to life America’s greatest symbol of freedom, The Statue of Liberty. The movies, placed side by side, are perfect. They encapsulate all that was good about 80’s family cinema, without dipping into the schmaltzy Disney bucket of emotion.
So, twenty years on, they’ve finally announced plans to make the movie that has been sitting in development hell for, well, twenty years – Ghostbusters 3. Do we need it? No – the Ghostbusters box set sits proudly and complete on many a DVD shelf across the world. There will be few people crying into their pints if the movie goes unmade. Do we want it? Maybe – there’s a part of me that want to see those characters again, to hear some more of Peter Venkman’s wisecracks, to laugh at Ray Stantz doe-eyed expressions, but this is accompanied by a huge concern that they won’t get it right. Every fan has had two decades to imagine the return of the foursome and I doubt it’s possible to live up to expectations at this stage.
That said, it was always a pet project for Aykroyd and Ramis – so, if anyone could do justice to it, it would be them. They have had the same two decades to dream up the return of the Ghostbusters. This time around they’ll have a bigger budget, they’ll have CG at their disposal, they will undoubtedly be able to attract any actors of their choice into bit roles for the movie. There are a lot of pluses.
But there are still negatives. Ramis and Aykroyd are just producing the movie. Harold Ramis recently confirmed that, this time, the script is being handled by US Office writers, Gene Stupnisky and Lee Eisenberg. Also, the director of the first two, Ivan Reitman, is not yet fully on board. At present Ramis is the de facto director.
A huge part of me is excited about the return of the Ghostbusters, but the disappointment of Indiana Jones adds to my concerns that this will mar the earlier Ghostbusters movies for me, just as this year’s Crystal Skulls has taken something from the old Indy movies. Time will tell and I’ll be keeping an eye out for any news about this movie right up to its release.