Over the years, the next Ghostbusters movie has gone through a massive evolution. Where it was initially envisioned as a direct sequel, even though Bill Murray repeatedly said he wasn’t going to be involved, it’s now a female-fronted reboot (or something) directed by Freaks and Geeks creator Paul Feig. As this news broke, along with leaked potential plot details and possible actresses, there has been a ton of controversy brewing. A lot of people out there absolutely hate this idea. For his part, Feig recently sat down to shed light on his approach to Ghostbusters, his preference for working with funny women, and bringing in legitimate scares along with the laughs.
Talking to Empire, Feig dished about why they’re reworking the franchise rather than delivering a straight up sequel. He says, “There’s something fun about introducing our world, which has never seen ghosts to the phenomenon of ghosts. I love origin stories and to introduce new characters.”
We’ve already heard the names of tons of hilarious, big name actresses bandied about in connection to Ghostbusters. Some have reportedly already met with Feig and others to discuss the movie, while others are just throwing their hat into the ring, just in case. Still, while some people love the idea of a group of women donning those iconic beige jumpsuits, the very thought enrages many others. Feig says, “A lot of people accused it of being a gimmick. I guess I can see the cynics’ view of it, but for me I just love working with funny women. People said, ‘Why don’t you do a mix?’ I’m just more interested in the idea of lady Ghostbusters. It’s the way my brain works.”
Even with the all the emphasis being placed on the comedy angle, that’s not all Feig has in store for audiences. He definitely wants to scare the shit out of you as well as make you laugh. He says, “I want ours to be scarier than the original, to be quite honest. [Co-writer] Katie Dipold and I are so focused on wanting to do scary comedy. We don’t want to hold back.”
Feig is most known for his foul-mouthed, often crude comedies like Bridesmaids and The Heat, but Ghostbusters is going to tone things down a bit from his usual approach. He says, “The reason I do a lot of R-Rated comedies is that you want a movie to feel honest. But the Ghostbusters world doesn’t need that level of swearing. We’ll have to be PG-13 with this one. I would like to make it R-Rated, but I won’t. You want the biggest number of people to watch it and not be put off by it.”
As much as I like Feig as a filmmaker, and the names mentioned as possible stars include a ton of actresses I am a fan of, like Emma Stone, Rebel Wilson, Jennifer Lawrence, Lizzie Caplan, and Melissa McCarthy, among others, I have very mixed feelings about this. It’s not even the way they’re doing it—a rebooted, female-fronted version is the best idea I’ve heard the studio come up with so far—this just feels so unnecessary to me. Over the years, none of the possible directions for a new Ghostbusters movie have inspired much confidence. I’ll see this, and probably enjoy it, but more Ghostbusters, in any form, always sounds like a bad idea. That hurdle is going to take some work to get over.
What do you think? Are you confident that Feig can pull off a worthwhile addition to the Ghostbusters canon, or do you just want everyone to stop?