When the Ghostbusters reboot of 2016 was first announced, many fans were not in favor of it. Much attention at the time was given to a portion of these fans who disgustingly opposed the film simply because women were cast in the lead roles, but there was also a significant number of non-sexist fans who disliked the idea of a Ghostbusters movie that wasn’t related to the original ’80s films, regardless of the Ghostbusters’ gender. Those latter fans may soon be satisfied, though, as a continuation of the original Ghostbusters movies has just been announced — and there’s already a teaser.
Jason Reitman, director of films like Juno and Up in the Air and son of original Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman, has announced that he is helming a new Ghostbusters sequel that will hit theaters next year. The announcement, as well as the speed of production, came as a massive shock, as no one seemed to be aware that anything was happening with Ghostbusters. The 2016 film lost money for the studio, the fanbase’s reputation took a major hit, and all we’d ever heard since then were teases for animated projects that have yet to materialize. So it appeared that Ghostbusters was dead, but apparently, you can’t kill a ghost.
EW first reported on the news of Jason Reitman directing the film off a script he wrote with Gil Kenan (Monster House), with Ivan Reitman will act as producer. “I’ve always thought of myself as the first Ghostbusters fan, when I was a 6-year-old visiting the set. I wanted to make a movie for all the other fans,” Jason told EW. “This is the next chapter in the original franchise. It is not a reboot. What happened in the ’80s happened in the ’80s, and this is set in the present day … I’ve thought about this franchise and it has occupied a piece of my heart for basically as long as I can remember.” Reitman also wanted to reiterate that there was no bad blood between his film and Paul Feig’s 2016 Ghostbusters reboot. “I have so much respect for what Paul created with those brilliant actresses, and would love to see more stories from them. However, this new movie will follow the trajectory of the original film,” he said. “The Ghostbusters universe is big enough to hold a lot of different stories.”
Sony has already scheduled the film for release in the summer of 2020, and it’s expected to begin shooting in the next couple of months. What’s not known is who could be returning from the original cast, as no one has yet been confirmed. Harold Ramis, who portrayed Egon Spengler, passed away in 2014; Bill Murray (Peter Venkman) has refused to participate in a proper Ghostbusters sequel for decades, though he did cameo as a different character in the reboot; and Rick Moranis (Louis Tully) retired from acting in the ’90s. That leaves Ernie Hudson (Winston Zeddemore), Annie Potts (Janine Melnitz), Sigourney Weaver (Dana Barrett), and Dan Aykroyd (Ray Stantz). It’s Aykroyd who seems all but guaranteed to return, as he co-wrote the original films with Ramis and has been keeping the Ghostbusters flame alive while trying to get Ghostbusters 3 made for years. And we’d bet good money that his character is the unseen person working on old Ghostbusting equipment in a lonely barn in the new film’s teaser.
The teaser is heavy on the nostalgia — the original Ecto-1, a piece of the iconic score from the ’84 film, and even some very ’80s-looking proton pack special effects. That all should definitely excite hardcore fans of the original film, but it’s hard to say how interested the general public will be after all of the ugliness that took place around the franchise just a few short years ago. We’ll have to just wait and see what people’s reaction to all this is as more news arrives in the coming weeks and months.