Ghostbusters: Something Old, Something New

Ghostbusters: Something Old, Something New

We're all holding our breath for a Ghostbusters 3, right? But what will it take for the movie to be successful? Hit the jump for my humble opinion.

A constant gripe in the entertainment industry, for the fans at least, is when something that is highly desired or anticipated never seems to complete its production (or even start production in some cases). Take ‘The Last Guardian’ for example, a video game that’s being created by Japanese developer: Team ICO. Team ICO has a reputation, one that started when they released the titular mega-hit “ICO” on the PlayStation 2, a game that I personally played and thought highly of.

ICO’s dreamy atmospheric and dark storytelling coupled together with gameplay that was innovative at the time of its release created the perfect recipe for something that would come to be recognized as a classic in the years to come. Knowing Team ICO’s history, it’s easy to see why their latest and greatest project might be highly anticipated -- but the stars just haven’t aligned in the right way it seems, because ‘The Last Guardian’ has yet to see the light of day apart from the occasional but seldom progress update from the developers themselves. Reassurances and small bits to whet our appetite are all the fans have received thus far, and for lack of a more sophisticated way to put it: it’s highly frustrating.

The “upcoming” film, ‘Ghostbusters 3’, is in a similar boat. The first Ghostbusters film debuted in 1984, and it shook the world! Since the franchise’s birth, Ghostbusters has become a staple of American pop culture and then some. I doubt the cast and crew expected to one day see video games, tee shirts and other memorabilia out the whazoo in such great quantity when they were filming on the set, much less a third movie in the world’s literal next generation. While the second Ghostbusters film was not received quite as well as the first, it was still a pretty darn good movie, and the franchise is still revered and worshipped to this day. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist, or an expert on the paranormal, to see that a third Ghostbusters movie has the potential to become something truly awesome; with the awe-inspiring and visually striking technology of modern day cinema, “Ghostbusters 3” is practically a no-brainer, especially because the original cast is still alive and kicking (less so for Bill Murray, it seems). So what’s the big deal?! Are these people on drugs, or are they just sitting around with their thumbs up their bums? Why can’t the movie get off the ground? Well, I’m sorry to say that’s not my place to say, but I will say this: there is a certain way this movie has to be made, or it may well fail in epic fashion and put the final nail in the “Doe – Ray- Egon!” coffin that Bill Murray has so desperately tried to bury.

Something Old:
A ‘new and hip’ Ghostbusters just won’t do. You shouldn’t fix what’s not broken, that’s just common sense. So with that being said, what does the third Ghostbusters flick need to bring to the table in order to make the film a success? The way I see it, three major things need to happen to make Ghostbusters 3 a hit.

1. Music – The soundtrack to the Ghostbusters franchise is one of the most iconic and well-recognized in all of cinema history. That goes without saying, I believe, but you never can anticipate what sort of money-grubbing shenanigans modern-day Hollywood big shots may be up to. To make sure Ghostbusters 3 has the proper soundtrack, the film needs to incorporate a healthy dose of…..drum roll please, NOSTALGIA! Nostalgia is a powerful force to be reckoned with. It’s the same force that draws millions of fans to conventions across the globe, what inspires internet arguments across the interwebs, and overall forms the better portion of every opinion ever. That is why I recommend some choice and/or key musical elements to be used in this movie.

a. First, I recommend bringing back “On Our Own” by not-so-popular-anymore artist Bobby Brown. Not only is it a catchy tune, it was recorded exclusively for Ghostbusters 2. It’s a great song, and Youtube keeps taking it down for copyright, so that will definitely tug at some heart strings for those who may not have heard it since the last time they saw the movie. You remember, don't you? The Ghostbusters siren wailing, the chorus playing in the background? Also, it may well save Bobby Brown some face, seeing as there are those who exist that blame him partially for Whitney Houston’s death.

Bobby Brown - On Our Own by jpdc11

b. Secondly, I am one-hundred percent positive that the Ghostbusters theme song originally recorded by Ray Parker Jr., will make a thunderous reprise. However, it’s time for some new blood. We need a new and popular artist to record the song, someone who represents the current generation. Here’s the tricky part: there’s a little over twenty-three bazillion artists who probably fit that role, give or take a few. Run DMC had their turn in the second movie, so I do not think that a rap or R&B artist should do it. I believe, to freshen things up, we should put a little more good ol’ fashioned rock and roll into the song. No, not the kind that screams in your face and makes you sad and cut yourself, but just enough to get audiences excited again. There’s no right or wrong answer to this question, but I’m going to suggest a few anyway, some artists I believe will reach the maximum amount of approval from today’s generation.
* Fun
* OneRepublic
* P!nk

c. Thirdly, sounds. The movie needs sounds. It’s simple: the siren, the background score, ghostly moans, power packs powering up. Need I go on?

2. Plot - The movie needs to bring the franchise back to its roots. Ghostbusters has been described in the past as “Lovecraftian”, referring of course to the works of H.P. Lovecraft. Lovecraft’s stories and novels were revolutionary for horror fiction, bringing a frightening new twist of science and inter-dimensional terror. Other elements of his work included slime, creatures from other dimensions, and paranormal science in general. These are the essential ingredients of the Ghostbusters mythos – anybody remember the “Gozer worship” plot? That type of plot is exactly what “Lovecraftian” refers to. Ghostbusters 3 needs to bring back all of the slimy and smarmy scientific hijinks of the originals.

H.P. Lovecraft

3. O.G. (Original Gangsters Ghostbusters) – This is where things get hairy. As far as we know, the original cast was mostly ready to come back, possibly with Rick Moranis in tow. But, Bill Murray wants to be a fartknocker and ruin everything. Okay, maybe that’s not the right perspective to take, but c’mon man! Even though it looks like Venkman won’t be making a comeback, I firmly believe that Ghostbusters 3 will fail without the original cast. It would be absolutely riveting to see the old Ghostbusters train the new ones. This brings me to my next point…

Something New:

The one and only thing that will be the most important element of Ghostbusters 3, that will make or break the movie, is the new Ghostbusters. There needs to be at least 3, or possibly 4 if they add a ‘token black-character’ like Ernie Hudson. We recently learned that, unfortunately, Emma Stone said “buh-bye” and exited the possible lineup. It looks like our favorite red-headed hottie won’t be making an appearance, but what about the other ‘busters? We could prattle and argue on and on and on about this, so to keep things simple, I am going to point out my top favorite picks for the next gen Ghostbusters team and why I have chosen them. These guys don't have to be in the movie all at once, but I think that any of these fine men would fit nicely into the movie's tone and style.

1. Jonah Hill – Okay, so maybe he’s already on the shortlist, but he’s perfect! He’s hip, he’s now, and he’s popular with just about everybody. Not only that, but he’s also a fine actor in his own right: he can be funny and serious, plus he’s already established his fandom with previous movies. He’s a surefire pick, even though I personally couldn’t imagine him being “scientific”. Maybe that’s the point?

2. Aziz Ansari – I absolutely love Aziz. Not only is he from South Carolina, my home state, he’s friggin’ hilarious! His standup comedy is a riot, and he now has a Netflix exclusive special that you should probably check out. Anyway, Aziz Ansari is a time-tested great actor who is slowly but surely rising in the ranks. His performance as Tom Haverford in “Parks and Recreation”, a ‘mockumentary’ type show like “The Office”, proves my point. He’s also, wait for it, not a white dude! I believe that his not being Caucasian, or African-American for that matter, will be a boon to the franchise’s penchant for being different. Aziz Ansari is charismatic, intelligent, and creative, which makes him a perfect choice that mirrors the original cast themselves.

3. Johnny Galecki – I have only two reasons for this choice. Besides the obvious reasons, being that he’s “what’s hot” nowadays, he bears a striking resemblance to Egon Spengler! I think incorporating Egon’s son, played by Johnny Galecki, would be a great way to tie the franchise together in a meaningful way. Not only that, but Galecki, in my opinion, has great stage presence which would increase the quality of the movie overall.

4. Rainn Wilson - How do I love Rainn Wilson, let me count the ways. He's so awesome, although I'm sure many people find him utterly the opposite. He starred in "Super" alongside Ellen Page, which was a pretty great superhero movie that really hit home for me in many ways. He's also part of the reason the television comedy, "The Office" (U.S. Version), was such a huge success; Rainn Wilson is one of my favorite actors, and I think that's all the explanation he really needs.

Okay. Maybe you don’t exactly agree with my choices. That’s perfectly fine, you don’t have to. The important part is we need a cast that reflects the strengths and weaknesses of the original four Ghostbusters. Feel free to suggest your own cast, I’m just saying that the filmmakers have an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to choose from a pool of tomorrow’s “Bill Murray’s”, and tomorrow’s much loved and treasured celebrities in general. It’s imperative that they choose wisely, or the movie will surely suffer for it.

In order to create the perfect "Ghostbusters 3", the powers that be MUST use the proper balance of new and old. By playing on the nostalgia of audiences, and slowly introducing the new cast, the third movie in the Ghostbusters trilogy can be a hit. They need to incorporate the same kind of soundtrack as they did before, and also revamp it for modern times. The plot and thematic elements need to match up with the Ghostbusters mythos, which includes interdimensional beings and slime (for more on this, I highly recommend playing the Ghostbusters video game -- it's loads of fun). Finally, the movie needs to have the perfect new cast for the next Ghostbusters team, and this team has to have the right chemistry so that audiences won't miss the original guys too much: remember, they need to set up the franchise for more movies! With these ingredients in place, Ghostbusters 3 doesn't have much room to go wrong. Now if we could only get Bill Murray to make a move....

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