Ghostbusters 3 is going ahead, much to the delight of fans of the franchise. The film, which has has been trapped in Hollywood development hell for at least two years, will apparently go ahead without Bill Murray, otherwise known as lead Ghostbuster Peter Venkman.
Murray’s erstwhile co-star, Dan Aykroyd (Ghostbuster Ray Stantz in films one and two), who has been spearheading the campaign to get the film into production, has expressed sadness at Murray’s absence, but also excitement at the thought of taking the series in a new direction.
At one point Murray seemed ready to get involved with the third film, even appearing at the 2010 Scream Awards in character as Venkman. However he later pulled out due to concerns over the quality of the script. Adamant that the third film should be as funny as the first, Murray explained his reasons to US television host David Letterman in June 2012:
‘They just don’t have a really good script… You know, even the second Ghostbusters wasn’t as much fun for me as the first one. It’s hard to make a sequel. That first one was so darn funny.’
In a recent interview with The Metro, Aykroyd commented on Murray’s decision to pull out, and seemed optimistic about the future of the film:
‘We’ve got a brilliant new writer on it and we’ll be passing the torch onto a new generation. We’re working on it to make it just right to satisfy our fans. I’m confident we’ll be in production next year…it’s sad (that Murray won’t be involved), but we’re passing it on to a new generation. Ghostbusters 3 can be a successful movie without Bill.’
The brilliant new writer is rumoured to be Etan Cohen, screenwriter for Men in Black 3 and Tropic Thunder (not to be confused with Ethan Coen, one half of the infamous Coen brothers). Aykroyd will be taking on the task of Executive Producer alongside Harold Ramis, who also starred in the original films as Ghostbuster Egon Spengler. Both Aykroyd and Ramis are rumoured to be bringing their characters back to the screen for the third film. Also according to rumour, at least one of the new generation of Ghostbusters will be female, although no actresses have been officially linked to the project as of yet.
No definite production or release dates for Ghostbusters 3 have been confirmed, but if Aykroyd’s words to The Metro turn out to be accurate, the film will start shooting in 2013.