Max Landis’ Ghostbusters 3 Pitch Would Have Told An Unexpected Origin Story

By David Wharton | Updated

This article is more than 2 years old

LandisAt this point, who knows whether Ghostbusters 3 will ever actually happen. It’s been on and off again more times than an obsessive compulsive’s lucky lightswitch, with damn near every comedic director and actor in Hollywood rumored to be attached at one point or another. Hell, entire crops of new stars have come and gone, and still we’ve got no Ghostbusters 3. One of the names mentioned in connection to the elusive Ghostbusters sequel recently was that of Max Landis, son of director John Landis and screenwriter of the found-footage flick Chronicle. Landis himself swiftly shot down those rumors via Twitter, but in the process tossed out some ideas for Ghostbusters 3 anyway.

The story broke Tuesday night in a since-deleted story from Nikki Finke, who claimed Landis was going to do a quick polish on the current Ghostbusters 3 draft. That’s certainly within the realm of possibility; while Landis’ actual list of produced credits is pretty short, he has numerous script sales and projects in various degrees of development, and I can certainly see him getting called in for a bit of script doctoring on GB3. In fact, he even hinted that he has been working on polishing several big-name projects that hadn’t gone public, but apparently Ghostbusters isn’t one of them. He did, however, provide his theoretical Ghostbusters 3 opening, which posits the origins of a fan-favorite character…

So there you have it, a brief glimpse at what Max Landis’ vision of a Ghostbusters film would look like. It’s very, very Max Landis. He’s one of those divisive guys whose talent I respect but who I still kind of want to hit with my car half the time. Would he be the right guy to write Ghostbusters 3? Maybe, maybe not. Even if I hated his Ghostbusters 3, though, I have no doubt it would be memorable.

Personally, Ghostbusters 3 just seems like an idea whose time has passed, especially after the death of Harold Ramis and Ivan Reitman’s subsequent stepping away from the director’s chair. Bill Murray’s involvement was already a longshot, and I’m sure that became even more unlikely given the loss of Ramis and Reitman. It’s time to just let it alone.

Besides, we already got a pretty satisfying Ghostbusters 3, if you ask me. The 2009 video game may have had its flaws, but the storyline was a nice follow-up that riffed off the events of the first two movies — including Ivo Shandor — all four of the core cast members returned to voices their characters, and it’s worth playing just to experience it, even if you’re not much of a gamer. Even Dan Aykroyd said at the time, “This is essentially the third movie.”

And if you’re craving more Ghostbusters goodness that has far less potential for unmitigated disaster than an actual third Ghostbusters movie, I recommend checking out IDW’s ongoing comic series or grabbing the excellent ’80s animated series on DVD. (Fun fact: the writing staff included Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski!)

If you’re curious to get a taste of Max Landis’ comedic sensibilities, check out his The Death and Return of Superman short below.