Few Hollywood franchises inspire the kind of fierce devotion that the Ghostbusters series enjoys. That was why many fans were outraged when filmmaker Paul Feig made a reboot of the original Ghostbusters in 2016, featuring an all-female cast to replace the original characters from the 1984 movie. Ernie Hudson, who played the role of Winston Zeddemore in the original Ghostbusters, recently explained why the 2016 reboot did not work.
"When you say reboot, which is the third movie, the one with the ladies - that I actually liked a lot. I definitely loved everybody who was in it. Paul Feig, I'm still fans of theirs - they tried to do a reboot. And a reboot, to me, means you're trying to do the movie over. Another version of what we already did. And I think that was a mistake. It wasn't a continuation or an extension of. It was somehow a different universe there. You know what I mean? It's kind of like us, but it's us but not us. In that universe, they're women. I don't know. That was a choice that was made."
The 2016 version of Ghostbusters existed in a strange kind of limbo where it borrowed the mythology of the franchise but ignored the original characters, but still used some of the actors from the original films, who were playing new characters. Bill Murray showed up briefly as a paranormal skeptic, Dan Aykroyd played a taxi driver, Hudson himself appeared as the uncle of one of the new Ghostbusters, and Sigourney Weaver and Annie Potts were also seen in brief cameos.
After the reboot failed to set the box office on fire, the franchise was rebooted once again (or... unbooted?) Now, the upcoming Ghostbusters: Afterlife is set in the same continuity as the original 1984 movie. Hudson is set to be a part of Afterlife, and according to the actor, this is the movie that fans have been waiting to see for decades.
"This is Ghostbusters. As we move on through the world, 20, 30 years later, it's still within the same universe. And the other was Ghostbusters. But like I said, it just felt like a retelling of the same story, which automatically causes comparisons that you really don't need to be doing. I'm saying this is how I feel like. But this is Ghostbusters later. It's been 30-35 years since we did the Ghostbusters'. And so this is years later. But definitely, it's the same universe."
Of course, sticking to the original continuity is no guarantee that the new Ghostbusters will be a slam dunk. But judging from the love with which the cast of the movie speaks of the project, Ghosbtusters: Afterlife appears set to be at least a more faithful continuation of the franchise than the 2016 film.
Directed by Jason Reitman, Ghostbusters: Afterlife stars Finn Wolfhard, Carrie Coon, Paul Rudd, and Mckenna Grace. The film arrives in theaters on November 11. Check out the full interview with Ernie Hudson at LivingLifeFearless.