Paul Feig opens up about the GHOSTBUSTERS reboot

3 min read


I really hate the word ‘reboot.’ It’s a nonsense word, dreamed up by studio marketeers because they don’t want to just call something a remake. Also, ‘reboot’ just has a stink of failure behind it. You don’t reboot something unless it has crashed. But there is a distinction: if you completely and utterly change what you are remaking – basically just keep the name – that is a reboot.

The new Ghostbusters appears to fit squarely into that camp. We already know that the movie will do a gender swap with four female ghostbusters, a decision I find a little worrying. Not that they are female – I am all for broader, better and smarter roles for women. But it smacks a little of a knee jerk reaction, at least again as far as studio types are concerned. At least we know that director Paul Feig appears genuine about making this change. He’s co-writing the story with Katie Dippold, who he worked with for the hit Bridesmaids. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Feig lays out his reasons:

My favorite thing to do is work with funny women. I was like, what if it was an all female cast? If they were all women?  Suddenly, my mind kind of exploded: that would be really fun.

He adds some detail about where the story may be going:

I thought, well, what if we just make it new? It’s not coming into the world that existed before. It’s always hard if the world has gone through this big ghost attack, how do you do it again? I wanted to come into our world where there’s talk of ghosts but they’re not really credible, and so what would happen in our world if this happened today?

In fact, it may even be scary:

Both [Katie] and I are obsessed with how do we make comedy really scary? The sequel to The Heat was going to be pretty scary and funny. Almost like in a Silence of the Lambs type thing but funny. I think funny people in peril and in danger is one of the best forms of comedy, and I really like things to play very real while funny things are happening. So that’s what both Katie and I really want to do with this one is make it crazy funny but also you’re scared at the same time. Katie loves to do that stuff and I do too.

And what about the previous cast?

Well, I mean, look, those are my comedy heroes. So as far as I’m concerned, anybody wants to come back I welcome with open arms. It would just be in different roles now, but it would be fun to figure out how to do that.

To be honest, I am still not sold on this idea. The same kind of big franchise/fan service/reinvention talk is what led to the disaster of the new Robocop. But Feig at least sounds eager and in control. Still, best dust off that copy of the original, just in case…

Last Updated: October 10, 2014

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