‘Ghostbusters’ with girls: Who you gonna call about this bad idea?

No substitute for the originals: (L to R) Harold Ramis, Ivan Reitman, Bill Murray, and Dan Ackroyd. Photo: Columbia Pictures Ghostbusters
No substitute for the originals: (L to R) Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson, Bill Murray, and Dan Ackroyd. Photo: Columbia Pictures

SAN DIEGO, January 27, 2015 – For years, rumors of a third sequel to the comedy hit “Ghostbusters” have circulated. No surprise. “Ghostbusters” is the biggest moneymaking comedy film ever released (when adjusted for inflation). Only “Raiders of the Lost Ark” beat it at the box office in 1984.

Never mind the fact the sequel made five years later didn’t do anywhere near as well or generate similar affection and cultural standing. With the dearth of great ideas in Hollywood, there have been many stops and starts about a third “Ghostbusters” movie. They heated up last year when “Bridesmaids” director Paul Feig confirmed he was working on a script which would star “hilarious women” as the new generation of Ghostbusters.

Who are these “hilarious women?” Tuesday on Twitter, Feig posted a photo of four comedienne/actresses without any other information: Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones. A few hours later, Variety Magazine film reporter Justin Kroll said sources confirmed to him the four were in early negotiations to star in the all-female version of the comedy classic.

Posted to Twitter by director Paul Feig, photos of (clockwise from top left) Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie James, and Kate McKinnon). Photo: Twitter
Posted to Twitter by director Paul Feig, photos of (clockwise from top left) Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon). Photo: Twitter

Several hours later, Paul Feig tweeted “In other news, #Ghostbusters will be hitting theaters July 22, 2016. Save the date!”

Feig worked with McCarthy and Wiig in the hit comedy “Bridesmaids,” and McKinnon and Jones are “Saturday Night Live” players. Actress Emma Stone was reportedly approached about a role, but she turned it down months ago. It may prove to be a wise decision.

Fans didn’t wait long before sounding off about the plan, and most fans aren’t down with it. A sampling of comments posted to the Variety story and other industry reports along with Twitter:

“This is lowest denominator comedy. There are some movies that shouldn’t be remade: Ghostbusters is definitely one of them.”

“The whole concept of changing genders for a reboot just screams ‘We don’t know what else to do.’”

“We all want a good movie. I don’t see how this could possibly be good.”

“Dear Lord! This is a terrible idea! Can’t we just leave well enough alone and let the “Ghostbusters” films die with dignity?”

“I don’t need a new Ghostbusters movie, thanks. The original was a perfect film, to me. Stop running classics into the ground.”

“The all female cast is not an “original” idea; it’s a novelty act meant to breathe life into what was original idea, but no longer is.  Whatever cast makes the next Ghostbuster movie with whatever genitalia they posses has their work cut out for them. Comedy is about the unexpected, and GB3 is as unexpected as a sunrise.” 

Hollywood, keep your hands off our comedy. Haven’t you learned your lesson from all the hyped up sequels and reboots which ended up as miserable failures? Comedies are tricky. It seems nearly impossible to catch the original lightning in a bottle. “Blues Brothers 2000” or “Men In Black III” anyone?

It is especially galling seeing this attempt to pander to a female audience. I don’t need a set of recycled comedic heroes from the 1980s given a sex change. It’s sloppy seconds. Women love seeing kick-ass action from girls, but please come up with something fresh and original that we can own, not something borrowed from the boys. We have been putting up with those hand-me-downs for decades.

In the meantime, message to Hollywood: If you are really hell bent on another bite at the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Men, I’m with Variety commenter “Joe”:

“Here’s who should be the G busters: Will Ferrell, Jack Black, Kevin Hart and Jeff Daniels. I’d cast Conchatta Ferrell from Two and a Half Men as their assistant/secretary. A cast like this would give the original cast a run for the money.”

Now we’re talking. I’d prefer someone like Aziz Ansari or Jonah Hill to Daniels, though. Who would you like to see in a modern version of “Ghostbusters”? Tell us in the Comments section.

Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Media Migraine in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +

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