‘Ghostbusters’ Reboot: Finally Bill Murray Speaks About His Cameo

By August 31, 2015
Bill Murray Ghostbusters Featured Image

When the Ghostbusters reboot was first announced to be female centric, a surprising amount of the geek faithful called foul. It didn’t matter that director Paul Feig was a proven hit-maker with such blockbusters as Bridesmaids, The Heat and the recent Spy with Melissa McCarthy on his resume. The cast, made up of successful Feig alumni, Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig, along with a couple of new faces, Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon, at least promise a fresh new take on the material.

In my opinion, the upheaval of angry geeks crying to the heavens had more to do with the lack of original cast members returning rather than the all female cast. This is especially true when you discuss the biggest name of them all: Bill Murray.

Everyone, including me, was pretty upset knowing Dr. Peter Venkman would not be returning to this world. And what exactly is the mythology… is this the same universe? Or is this new take, truly, a reboot?

The movie Gods answered the call when it was recently announced that Bill Murray would return, not as Dr. Venkman but as a yet, unknown cameo role. And because Bill Murray is not playing Venkman, we have a definite answer. Reboot. Whether you like it or not the new movie and its take is here to stay, seeing as it is currently filming and set for release a year from now.

Thankfully, Vulture caught up with Bill Murray, who finally spoke up about his role; a character rumored to be trying to debunk the new Ghostbusters team. When Vulture asked Murray about it all at the recent screening of his new movie, Rock the Kasbah, his answer was a surprisingly candid one.

“You know, they were incredibly nice to ask me, and I really enjoyed being there,” Murray said. “They have such a jolly group, and they are going to have great success with this project. I didn’t want to overshadow [them] or anything, and I feel really good about it.”

Murray in the past was adamant about not returning in any capacity, with rumors even going so far stating he was ‘dead’ in the universe, and would only appear as a ghost. This would have been pretty amazing for sure, but it still didn’t move the needle as far as a green-light.

But Murray wasn’t having any of it, it seems. He wasn’t really interested in returning at all:

“That’s true, I wasn’t,” Murray admitted, though the addition of actresses like Wiig and McCarthy — who he called “a great hope” — changed his mind. “I like those girls a lot,” he said. “I mean, I really do. They are tough to say no to. And Paul is a real nice fellow.”

He continued discussing why he agreed to a ‘cameo,’

“I thought about it for a very long time,” he said. “Like, many, many months. No, that’s not right. I was seriously thinking about this for years, really … It kept eating at me, and I really respect those girls. And then I started to feel like if I didn’t do this movie, maybe somebody would write a bad review or something, thinking there was some sort of disapproval [on my part].”

It is well known that Murray hated the previous drafts that came in to the studio. As he stated all the way back in 2011,

No one wants to pay money to see fat, old men chasing ghosts. 

To me it looks like Murray agreed to do the part as a solid to the team of new actors, Paul Feig, and the fans everywhere. But… and this is a big ‘but,’ I think having him in the movie as a cameo confuses the audience and takes away from the larger picture. If Bill isn’t returning to the role most people count on as their favorite, then I want my Ghostbusters without the original actors. Start fresh (all female cast is the perfect “fresh take”), and go from there. That’s just my opinion.

All we can do now is wait and hope that the new movie scratches the itch for the Ghostbusters faithful. Because if it does, then we will have a whole new franchise and, perhaps, a whole shared universe to look forward to.

Ghostbusters opens in theaters on July 22, 2016

Make sure to keep checking back for more updates — right here on GeekNation!

Mark Reilly
Born a geek a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away - Tustin, CA - Reilly is a seasoned writer and producer with over twenty years experience in the film industry. He is the co-host of 'Far, Far Away' here on GeekNation as well as 'Meet the Movie Press' on the Popcorn Talk Network; which airs live every Friday morning at 9am pst. Tweet him at @Reillyaround