After years and years of speculation and rumors* concerning the future of Ghostbusters, we can finally let out a collective sigh of relief that it’s finally, definitely all over. Seriously, google “pajiba+ghostbusters+3” and the first hit dates all the way back to September 2008 — when the world was on the precipice of total catostrophic failure and we needed something, anything just to feel alive again. It’s not hard to wonder why the Internet is obsessed with this possible, but highly unlikely, third movie from a franchise so many of us remember fondly, either from our childhoods, our stoned and/or drunken college days, or when we started making families and bringing our children to movies. Plus, that first flick is quite good.
But all that is moot now, because when responding to a question posed by David Letterman on his talk show about a new sequel, Bill Murray gave what hopefully counts as his most definitive answer on the subject yet. And when Bill Murray speaks, you shut your mouth and listen:
“Well, that’s all that they wanted to know at Cannes, too. You know, you just gotta have a really good script. It’s hard. Even the second Ghostbusters wasn’t as much fun for me as the first one. It’s hard to make a sequel. It’s gotta be really funny, and that first one was just so darn funny.”
Huh. Okay. So that wasn’t nearly as definitive as I’d hoped, and not even close to sending former co-star Dan Aykroyd a shredded copy of the latest revised script. But Murray does seem to be vaguely calling Aykroyd’s bluff on the whole “We could make Ghostbusters without Bill Murray in the role of Peter Venkman” ridiculousness. He’s not saying he would never do one, he’s just saying the third has to be as good, if not better, than the original, and that basically means he’ll never do another. Because, hey, that first movie really is pretty great, isn’t it? Of course, Letterman being the incredibly shrewd interviewer that he is, asked if anybody was currently working on a new Ghostbusters 3 screenplay. To which Murray hedged even further, “Well, I think, we’ll try again. I always drag my feet on it.”
Damn it, Mr. Murray. No. No, no, no. Nonononononononononono. NO. You do not give Dan Aykroyd the ammunition he needs to say that he was merely hoping to start pre-production on Ghostbusters 3 this summer, but now that you’ve expressed interest in “trying again” in a collaborative effort, it would be obviously fucking stupid to make a Ghostbusters movie without his dear friend Bill Murray in the iconic role that he created. You’ve now doomed us all to further speculation and rumors and sloppily written trade news posts for so many more years to come, just because you don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings. It’s okay to admit that Ghostbusters 2 was mostly terrible and that you salvaged what little was there, and that there’s absolutely no way a third chapter could ever be satisfying so many years after the original. “Just look at all the disappointing latter acts from 1980s and 90s series that have been made in the past decade,” is all you need to say to make it clear to everybody who cares that you won’t be party to it with the one franchise you’re still attached to.
But you don’t feed the trolls, Mr. Murray. You don’t feed the trolls.
Who else needs an adult beverage?
Rob Payne also writes the comic The Unstoppable Force, tweets on the Twitter @RobOfWar, and his wares can be purchased here and here (if you’re into that sort of thing). He’s glad he writes most of his articles in the evening prior to publication, because by the time he finishes it’s socially acceptable to get good and sloshed.