Checking in on the status of some long-delayed sequels, reboots and remakes
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Background: This would seem to be one of the easiest films for Hollywood to crank out on the entire list. After all, the first film even contains the seed of a huge series of films when Peter Venkman (Bill Murray) observes after they walk out of the bank that loans them their start up money, "The franchise rights alone will make us rich." A new generation of comic talent stepping into the suits and picking up the proton packs seems like a natural next step, and Ivan Reitman and Dan Aykroyd have been trying actively to make it happen for the better part of a decade.
Current Status: Bill Murray is the mixed blessing of the "Ghostbusters" franchise. He's a big part of why the first film was a pop culture sensation, and he went from beloved comic to monster movie star playing the part. He's far more cautious in recent years about films he signs up for, following an eclectic and unpredictable personal sense of taste when choosing things. So far, he's refused to sign up for this sequel or to sign off on a script, and he's starting to drive his collaborators crazy. Without him, there's no franchise, and he seems to take a perverse pleasure in keeping this up on the blocks. It's been long-rumored that he'll only return if Aykroyd kills him off early on, allowing Venkman to appear as a ghost, but no word if that's actually been part of the various scripts that have been commissioned and shot down. New writers are hard at work now, and only time will tell if Murray ever decides that he, in fact, ain't afraid of no ghosts.
- Drew McWeeny