|Directed by||Jason Reitman|
|Produced by||Ivan Reitman|
by Dan Aykroyd
|Distributed by||Sony Pictures Releasing|
Ghostbusters: Afterlife (also known as Ghostbusters 3) is an upcoming American fantasy comedy film directed by Jason Reitman and written by Reitman and Gil Kenan. It stars Mckenna Grace, Finn Wolfhard, Carrie Coon, Paul Rudd, Logan Kim and Celeste O'Connor, while Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver and Annie Potts reprise their roles from earlier Ghostbusters films. It is the fourth film in the Ghostbusters franchise, and continues the story from Ghostbusters (1984) and Ghostbusters II (1989). The story follows a family who moves to a small town, where they learn more about who they are and the secrets of the town itself.
A third Ghostbusters film had been in various stages of development since Ghostbusters II in 1989. After Murray refused to commit to the project, and after the death of cast member Harold Ramis in 2014, Sony instead produced a reboot film. After the 2016 Ghostbusters underperformed at the box office, Reitman began developing a direct sequel to the original films. The new cast members were announced by July 2019, while the members from the original films signed on two months later.
A single mother and her two children move to Oklahoma after inheriting property from a previously unknown relative. They discover their family's legacy to the original Ghostbusters, who have become something of a myth as many have long-since forgotten the events of the "Manhattan Crossrip of 1984".
- Mckenna Grace as Phoebe
- Finn Wolfhard as Trevor
- Carrie Coon as Callie
- Paul Rudd as Mr. Grooberson
- Logan Kim as Phoebe's classmate
- Celeste O'Connor
- Bokeem Woodbine as Sheriff Domingo
- Oliver Cooper
- Bill Murray as Dr. Peter Venkman
- Dan Aykroyd as Dr. Raymond "Ray" Stantz
- Ernie Hudson as Winston Zeddemore
- Sigourney Weaver as Dana Barrett
- Annie Potts as Janine Melnitz
During the 1990s following the release of Ghostbusters II, Dan Aykroyd wrote a script for a third film tentatively titled Ghostbusters III: Hellbent. The concept had the characters transported to an alternate universe version of Manhattan called Manhellton, where the people and places are "hellish" versions of Earth, with the Ghostbusters meeting and confronting the devil. At the time, Aykroyd stated that the studio was interested, though the principal actors were not. It featured a new, younger group of Ghostbusters, while Ray, Egon, and Winston struggle to keep the business going upon Peter's relationship becoming serious with Dana. Much of this concept was recycled years later, for Ghostbusters: The Video Game in 2009.
By 2004, movement on a sequel was revisited by the studio, though Bill Murray expressed his disinterest in the project stating that he dislikes sequels. The following year, Ramis confirmed plans to introduce Ben Stiller into the principal cast. By 2009, however development of the project had stalled. Both Ramis and Aykroyd subsequently confirmed that the script calls for a new group of younger Ghostbusters, with the latter stating that the cast would feature a gender diversity and include new technology used by the titular team. By January 2010, Reitman confirmed that he would be directing the film. In March, Murray discussed development of the film, and his intentions to reprise his role. A release was scheduled for Christmas 2012. In the October issue of Vanity Fair, Aykroyd commented on the screenplay written by Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg, stating that he was particularly impressed with how Murray's character had been written, and the implementation of the new team with the original team, while he and Ramis would work on a second draft of the script.
By August 2011, Aykroyd stated that the plan was for the film to begin filming later that year with the story being the mantel handed down to the younger generation. Later when Murray decided to pass on reprising the starring role, Aykroyd announced that all creatives involved were actively searching for an actor to replace him. He also mentioned that he wanted Moranis to return as Louis Tully. By February 2012, the film was placed on hold as the production team reevaluated the project. Without Murray, the studio searched for replacement actors and considered featuring his character as a CGI-rendered ghost. By June, Murray again acknowledged that all involved were attempting to develop the third film once more before dropping out of the film the following month. The next month, Aykroyd confirmed that the film was back in development, with a script re-write from Etan Cohen. Aykroyd said of the script that "It's got to be perfect. That's the whole thing. There's no point in doing it unless it's perfect. So that's what we're up to now." By September, Reitman announced the developments of a remake. In May 2013, Aykroyd discussed plot points including real-life experiments being done by college students at Columbia University being source for inspiration. The plot will revolve around research being done by the university, which brings about threats from other dimensions with a new team of Ghostbusters forming to save Earth's plane of existence from supernatural threats. The script reportedly wrote Murray's character in, with hopes that the actor would decide to join the production.
After the death of Harold Ramis on February 24, 2014, Sony Pictures stated that Ramis would be included through use of a cameo appearance. With the script needing to be reworked following Ramis' passing, the project was delayed once again. By March 2015, it was confirmed that Reitman would not be directing the third film, but would remain as producer with plans to begin principal photography by early-2015. Weaver later revealed that her character's son will feature as a member of the team. The project was ultimately delayed as the studio searched for a director.
A new film connected to the original two films, tentatively titled Ghostbusters 3, was revealed in January 2019. Jason Reitman, son of original director Ivan Reitman, will direct from a script co-written by himself and Gil Kenan, while Ivan Reitman will serve as a producer. According to The Hollywood Reporter's Borys Kit, the film will feature teenagers, two boys and two girls, as the new recruits for the titular team. It is scheduled to be released on July 10, 2020. The film was expected to start production in July 2019 in Calgary for about 15 weeks.
Reitman has stated the film will likely ignore the events of 2016's Ghostbusters: Answer the Call, a reboot of the franchise which featured a female-led cast directed by Paul Feig. Reitman's decision drew ire from that film's star Leslie Jones on Twitter. Jones called this approach "so insulting" and ignoring the efforts that her cast and crew put out. Later, in February 2019, Reitman stated on a podcast that this film will "hand the movie back to the fans". In response to those commentators that felt this approach was continuing the gender-driven controversy raised during production of the 2016 film, Reitman clarified that he did not mean to snub the 2016 film, and that he had "nothing but admiration" for Feig. Feig himself stated that Reitman had been a supporter of his film, and that he “can't wait to see his take on the Ghostbusters universe". Reitman later explained the origins of his film, that the idea of a young teenage girl wanting to be a Ghostbuster had come to him, and with positive reaction from Feig's film, proved out that the idea that anyone could be a Ghostbuster would work. Reitman continued that the Ghostbusters franchise could readily expand on this idea with all types of people becoming Ghostbusters, personally thanking Feig for making this possible. Aykroyd, of Reitman's script, stated "Jason Reitman wrote a beautiful, heartfelt script that takes the real DNA from the first two movies and transfers that directly to the third, the next generation. It hands the legacy off to a new generation of stars, and players, and actors, and characters."
Mckenna Grace, Finn Wolfhard, and Carrie Coon were announced in March 2019, cast as the sister and brother with their single mother, respectively. Reitman described Grace as an avid fan of the series and a perfect fit for his teenaged-girl Ghostbuster concept. Wolfhard was unsure if he would get the role as he had already dressed up as a Ghostbuster during the second season of Stranger Things and that "Jason Reitman is probably not even going to look at my tape" because of that. On June 27, 2019, Paul Rudd shared a video on the official Ghostbusters social media accounts revealing that he had been cast in the film, later confirmed to be Mr. Grooberson, the childrens' new teacher that knows of the Ghostbusters' legacy. Newcomers Celeste O'Connor and Logan Kim were announced as cast in July 2019.
Under the working title "Rust City", filming began on July 12, 2019 in Calgary, Alberta and area, and lasted until October. Location shooting in surrounding communities such as Crossfield and Beiseker took place during July and August 2019. Additional locations around Alberta were also used. On October 18, 2019, Reitman posted a photo on his Instagram account confirming that filming had wrapped after 68 days.
Prior to December 2019, the film was given the working title of Ghostbusters 2020. A very short teaser trailer was released on January 16, 2019. A first look was released through Vanity Fair on December 6, 2019, officially revealing the title as Ghostbusters: Afterlife. The film's first trailer is set to be released on December 9, 2019.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife is scheduled to be released in the United States on July 10, 2020 by Sony Pictures Releasing.
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