News

'Ghostbusters 3': A sequel that will happen over Bill Murray's dead body?

Patrick Goldstein
Los Angeles Times (MCT)

LOS ANGELES — You could argue that Hollywood's sequel mania really began in earnest in 1989, when the box-office grosses started piling up for both "Ghostbusters 2" and "Lethal Weapon 2," proving that there was no good reason — from the business end of the equation — why you had to come up with an original idea for a blockbuster movie when you could just milk something that had already worked. "Lethal Weapon" went on to a long and happy sequel life.

But Sony has never been able to mount another installment in the "Ghostbusters" franchise — though you can't say it hasn't been for lack of trying. It feels as if every time I turn around, I read a story about how sequel efforts are moving ahead with another round of screenwriters at work, trying to figure out how to spin something off from the landmark 1984 comedy that ushered in an entire era of "Men in Black"-style comic special-effects films.

If there's always one fly in the ointment, it's Bill Murray. Even though pretty much everyone else involved with the project seems to have a vested interest in making a "Ghostbusters 3," Murray, who is nothing if not an iconoclastic free spirit, keeps saying "no way, Jose."

That doesn't mean that Sony couldn't just write him out of the movie, although some recent stories have argued that Murray, along with his fellow original stars, Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, have veto power over any new project moving ahead.

But everyone seems to want his blessing. Bless his heart, Murray seems to feel the same way about sequels that I do: that with rare exception (and yes, I'm willing to admit that "The Dark Knight" is a worthy exception), studio sequels are almost always more dutiful than inspired. In New York, promoting his new film, "Get Low," Murray laid it on the line. Asked if "Ghostbusters 3" was ever going to happen, he replied:

"No, it's ridiculous. That's an absolutely — that's just a horrible rumor. It's like illegitimate children in Antarctica, it's ridiculous .... Mind you, we only made two, and the first one was still the better one, so another one wouldn't seem to be any better. The studio wants to make it because they can re-create the franchise and put new Ghostbusters in it. That's what it's about."

If you're laying odds, I'd say the odds of Murray giving his blessing to a new "Ghostbusters" sequel are about as good as the odds of Sandra Bullock getting back together with Jesse James.

Music


Books


Film


Recent
Books

Political Cartoonist Art Young Was an Aficionado of all Things Infernal

Fantagraphics' new edition of Inferno takes Art Young's original Depression-era critique to the Trump Whitehouse -- and then drags it all to Hell.

Love in the Time of Coronavirus

OK Go's Emotional New Ballad, "All Together Now", Inspired by Singer's Bout with COVID-19

Damian Kulash, lead singer for OK Go discusses his recent bout with COVID-19, how it impacted his family, and the band's latest pop delight, "All Together Now", as part of our Love in the Time of Coronavirus series.

Books

The Rules Don't Apply to These Nonconformist Novelists

Ian Haydn Smith's succinct biographies in Cult Writers: 50 Nonconformist Novelists You Need to Know entice even seasoned bibliophiles.

Music

Siren Songs' Meredith Kaye Clark and Jenn Grinels Debut As a Folk Duo (album stream + interview)

Best friends and longtime musical collaborators Meredith Kaye Clark and Jenn Grinels team up as Siren Songs for the uplifting folk of their eponymous LP.

Music

Buzzcocks' 1993 Comeback 'Trade Test Transmissions' Showed Punk's Great Survivors' Consistency

PopMatters' appraisal of Buzzcocks continues with the band's proper comeback LP, Trade Test Transmissions, now reissued on Cherry Red Records' new box-set, Sell You Everything.

Music

Archie Shepp, Raw Poetic, and Damu the Fudgemunk Enlighten and Enliven with 'Ocean Bridges'

Ocean Bridges is proof that genre crossovers can sound organic, and that the term "crossover" doesn't have to come loaded with gimmicky connotations. Maybe we're headed for a world in which genres are so fluid that the term is dropped altogether from the cultural lexicon.

Books

Claude McKay's 'Romance in Marseille' Is Ahead of Its Time

Claude McKay's Romance in Marseille -- only recently published -- pushes boundaries on sexuality, disability, identity -- all in gorgeous poetic prose.

Music

Christine Ott Brings the Ondes Martenot to New Heights with the Mesmerizing 'Chimères'

France's Christine Ott, known for her work as an orchestral musician and film composer, has created a unique new solo album, Chimères, that spotlights an obscure instrument.

Music

Man Alive! Is a Continued Display of the Grimy-Yet-Refined Magnetism of King Krule

Following The OOZ and its accolades, King Krule crafts a similarly hazy gem with Man Alive! that digs into his distinct aesthetic rather than forges new ground.

Books

The Kinks and Their Bad-Mannered English Decency

Mark Doyles biography of the Kinks might complement a seminar in British culture. Its tone and research prove its intent to articulate social critique through music for the masses.

Music

ONO Confronts American Racial Oppression with the Incendiary 'Red Summer'

Decades after their initial formation, legendary experimentalists ONO have made an album that's topical, vital, uncomfortable, and cathartic. Red Summer is an essential documentation of the ugliness and oppression of the United States.

Film

Silent Women Filmmakers No Longer So Silent: Alice Guy Blaché and Julia Crawford Ivers

The works of silent filmmakers Alice Guy Blaché and Julia Crawford Ivers were at risk of being forever lost. Kino Lorber offers their works on Blu-Ray. Three cheers for film historians and film restoration.

Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews

Features
Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.