Wanna feel old? This June 8, Ghostbusters will be turning 30. Thirty! That’s my entire life, less five years. It’s the sort of gut-clenching realization that will force a guy to face his inevitable decrepitude and mortality. And once I have shuffled off my mortal coil, somebody’s going to need to take me out if I keep hanging around, sliming people. Which brings me back to Ghostbusters, and more specifically to this treasure trove of behind-the-scenes pictures recently posted to Reddit by one devoted fan of the classic horror/comedy. (You can click the embedded images for larger versions.)
The photos come from a 1985 book called, appropriately enough, Making Ghostbusters. Written by John Shay, you can read the entire thing — and several other Ghostbusters-related publications — in PDF form over at Spook Central. Honestly, if you’re a Ghostbusters fan, it’s like Christmas came early. Or late, depending on your point of view. At any rate, if Krampus shows up to ruin everybody’s good time, you know who you gotta call.
It’s always interesting to get a glimpse behind the scenes of your favorite movies, especially the ones that were made pre-internet, back before you could follow damn near every step of a movie production via sites like GFR. Many of these shots are particularly noteworthy because they feature sequences that didn’t make the cut to the final film, such as this couple whose honeymoon at the Hotel Sedgwick is spoiled by a stinky ghost…
…or this shot of “the Chinatown ghost” that was nearly used for the faux New York Post cover…
…or this ridiculous getup Ray (Dan Aykroyd) is sporting during a spooky stakeout.
The other thing I love about these is how they give us a look at the film’s amazing practical effects works. In this era when pretty much anything an be put on screen via CGI (even if it would look/work better if done practically), it’s all the more impressive to look back at the craft and care films crews on movies such as Ghostbuster put into making their fictional worlds convincing. And hey, sometimes you’d get to feel up Sigourney Weaver while wearing a demon arm!
With Ghostbusters about to celebrate three decades of life, it’ll be interesting to see if the third film finally manages to get made. I’m skeptical, but if there’s a steady paycheck in it, I’ll believe anything you say.