The Bill Murray Movie That Has Never Been Released

The Bill Murray movie Nothing Lasts Forever had a great cast at the time but it never actually saw a big theatrical release.

By Britta DeVore | Published

While MCU fans are gearing up to check out Bill Murray when he makes what will be his second appearance in a Marvel-based project, many die-hard fans are still waiting for the day in which the actor’s 1984 project, Nothing Lasts Forever will make its theatrical debut. While his upcoming project, Being Mortal, may be the postponed Murray-centered production that’s been on everyone’s mind as of late, we’re here to remind you of the sci-fi dramedy that never was. Despite a killer lineup of talent and direction under Saturday Night Live writer Tom Schiller, the movie just never made it out of post-production and into theaters.

If you haven’t heard of the project before, bear with us because the synopsis is a little wild (we know, we know – wild? In a Bill Murray movie?) In the feature, Zach Galligan (Gremlins) stars as Adam Beckett, an up-and-coming artist living abroad. After gaining the courage to chase his dreams, Adam returns to New York only to discover that the Port Authority has declared a strange version of martial law and isn’t letting just any regular Joe into the city.

bill murray
Bill Murray in Nothing Lasts Forever

After flunking a drawing test given to him by New York’s new dictators, Adam finds himself working a nightmare job of directing traffic in the Holland tunnel under the thumb of a domineering boss played by Dan Aykroyd (Nothing but Trouble). Lucky for Adam, he quickly makes friends with a homeless man who shows the aspiring artist that the homeless population is actually in charge of the city and are also shipping folks off on a bus to the moon. It’s here that Bill Murray’s character, a bus ticket collector appears, to help Adam on his journey in not only leaving the Earth for the moon, but also in finding his soulmate, Eloy (Lauren Tom).

Sure, it sounds just about as wacky as they come, but boy would we have loved to have seen this sci-fi flick! Along with Zach Galligan, Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and Lauren Tom, the witty futuristic movie also featured an ensemble cast of who’s who in old-time Hollywood including the likes of political satirist Mort Sahl, Anita Ellis (Gilda), Sam Jaffe (The Asphalt Jungle, The Day the Earth Stood Still), and comedian Imogene Coca (Your Show of Shows).

Plus, there was Eddie Fisher (The Eddie Fisher Show, Bundle of Joy), Rosemary De Angelis (For Pete’s Sake), Apollonia van Ravenstein (Seraphita’s Diary), and Paul Rogers (The Homecoming). And along with all the big names, Saturday Night Live creator, and comedy producer legend, Lorne Michaels was attached to Nothing Lasts Forever as its producer.

All was chugging along well for the film, which Tom Schiller also penned, but things hit a wall just before its release in September 1984. While the lack of product certainly left many fans in the lurch, especially with there still not being a reason as to why the feature was never given its proper theatrical opening, a book penned by Michael Streeter took fans through the creation of the feature.

Titled Nothing Lost Forever: The Films of Tom Schiller, the author was able to interview all the leading players, speaking with Zach Galligan, Lauren Tom, Bill Murray, Tom Schiller, and Lorne Michaels about their time making the movie that wasn’t.

Back in 2011, an eager fan leaked a copy of the film to YouTube, but (as you can imagine) was quickly slapped with a cease and desist through the film’s current copyright holder, Turner Entertainment. While it may have never had the great Hollywood fanfare premiere that it deserved, Nothing Lasts Forever did receive several screenings over the years. From Brooklyn to Los Angeles and even St. Louis, the feature received several screenings, many with Tom Schiller in attendance and one with Bill Murray tagging along. 

With Nothing Lasts Forever showing no signs of a broad theatrical drop, we’ll need to get our Bill Murray fix in via other ways. And, it seems that we’re in luck. Along with Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, the comedian has his name attached to two other projects due out sometime in the near future. 

First up, we’ll see the Space Jam actor star opposite Zac Efron in the adaptation of the autobiographical Vietnam war story/buddy comedy, The Greatest Beer Run Ever. The actor will also appear in Aziz Ansari’s feature-length directorial debut, a comedy-drama titled Being Mortal, which is also adapted from a non-fiction story of the same name.

While chances of seeing Bill Murray and the rest of the cast of Nothing Lasts Forever in the yet-to-be-released movie are slim, there’s always a chance as Turner Entertainment still owns the feature’s rights and have once before, in 2015, screened it on their Turner Classic Movies as part of a special night of features.