I started writing about film news sometime around 2008, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve written about Ghostbusters 3 since then. It has to be in the hundreds – which is totally insane when talking about a movie that is barely closer to being made today than it was twenty years ago. Back in August, word came out that the studio wanted Bridesmaids helmer Paul Feig to direct a reboot featuring an all-female cast. Nothing has officially been announced, though, so we’re left where we’re always left with this movie: with no real answers, only more speculation.
The man who has provided most of that speculation over the past two decades is Ghostbusters star and co-writer Dan Aykroyd, who has seemingly made it his personal mission to get a third film made even if if it kills him. But his latest round of publicity for the yet-to-be-officially-greenlit sequel may contain his craziest idea yet.
THR has quotes from Aykroyd when he spoke recently in London to promote his vodka brand, and he said that the entire creative team – “the executives, the creatives, Ivan [Reitman, the director] and myself” – are looking not only at a third Ghostbusters movie, but at what else they can do in the next ten years to extend the franchise:
It’s beyond just another sequel, a prequel, another TV show. I’m thinking what does the whole brand mean to Sony? What does Pixar and Star Wars mean to Disney? What does Marvel mean to Fox?…
It’s up on blocks, it needs new electronics, new everything. That’s what we have to do. The whole vehicle of Ghostbusters has to be rebuilt. That’s the ambitious thinking that’s going on now. Taking on the model of Marvel where we take all of the elements that are in this movie and we put them out there as different ideas.
Look, the Marvel method has worked very well for that company, largely because it’s based on comic books in which characters crossover for big events and then return to their own ongoing stories. The money that Marvel Studios is pulling in is surely enough to tempt anyone into thinking they can replicate that model, but it’s a lot tougher than it looks. Do audiences really want an influx of Ghostbusters on that scale? Can Aykroyd and his team even manage something like that when they’ve failed to get this latest sequel made for over two decades? Get a load of this:
[The focus must be] not just another movie or another TV show, but what’s the totality of it? The whole mythology from the beginning of their lives, the end of their lives. Ghostbusters at nine years old, Ghostbusters in high school.
Ghostbusters at nine years old? That may have worked for “The Muppet Babies,” because you could make a case that those characters had unexplored backstories that could be mined for a kids’ TV show. But the Ghostbusters didn’t become the Ghostbusters until the original movie, so why would we care what they were doing at nine years old? Unless he’s talking about an entire new generation of Ghostbusters wandering the halls of elementary and high schools, which raises a whole host of other questions: Why are these schools haunted? Why aren’t adults dealing with the ghost problem? Where are the “real” Ghostbusters? And so on.
This entire thing strikes me as a case of Icarus flying too close to the sun, and until a third Ghostbusters movie is physically in theaters across the world, I’m not going to take any of this too seriously because until then, this is the same thing it’s been for the past twenty years – talk.
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