Surprise! Those still crossing their fingers for the very long in-development Ghostbusters 3 were granted a glimmer of hope when we recently learned that the sequel could start filming next summer, but that hope has now swiftly been dashed out. Due to some financial uneasiness, Sony Pictures Entertainment is currently reassessing all of their projects in the pipeline. Per THR, any decision on Ghostbusters 3 has been postponed until the end of March, which means that the hoped-for Summer 2013 start date is no longer a possibility. Should Sony ultimately decide to move forward with the sequel, filming likely wouldn’t be able to get underway until next fall at the earliest.
The most recent draft of the script was written by Etan Cohen, and Ghostbusters I and II director Ivan Reitman had been set to return. I’m not sure we really need another Ghostbusters movie (especially now that Bill Murray is out), and I remain skeptical as to whether Ghostbusters 3 will actually come to fruition.
At this point, if Dan Aykroyd has anything to say about Ghostbusters III, I tend to take it with a grain of salt. Last week, Aykroyd said that the movie had replaced Bad Teacher scribes, Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, with “a new writing staff.” Here’s the grain of truth: Ghostbusters III does have a new writer, but not a staff. According to Variety, Sony has brought in Men in Black 3 screenwriter Etan Cohen to rewrite the script. Cohen received sole writing credit on MIB 3, which has grossed more than $600 million worldwide, even though his script wasn’t completely finished when filming began, and it was passed off to other writers (namely Jeff Nathanson and then David Koepp) during production.
With a project the size of Ghostbusters III, I don’t expect Cohen to be the last writer who gets his hands on the script. In addition to this new gig, he’s also attached to make his directing debut on Boy Scouts vs. Zombies. Hit the jump for more on Ghostbusters III
I still can’t get over how much I liked Bad Teacher and how hard and consistently I laughed throughout. It’s not one of my favorite movies of the year, but it was certainly the best surprise thus far. That’s why I’m delighted to hear that screenwriters Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg and director Jake Kasdan are re-teaming for an untitled comedy at Sony. Here’s the logline according to Deadline: “After a Supercuts manager advises his best friend to break off his engagement, he unexpectedly falls in love with the jilted fiancee, testing both his new romance and his friendship.” I imagine the worst part isn’t the risk of losing your girlfriend or your best friend. It’s the realization of working at Supercuts.
There’s no word on a sequel to Bad Teacher even though the film grossed $215 million worldwide off a $30 million budget. If a sequel doesn’t happen, I would be completely okay with that. In a related story, Eisneberg and Stupnitsky worked on the screenplay for Ghostbusters III and Deadline has a discouraging update on the long-in-development sequel.
Earlier today, we reported that Columbia is trying to get Ivan Reitman off of Ghostbusters III. Of course oddly enough one of their hopes was that Reitman would be too busy to direct the sequel because of his other project for Paramount, Friends With Benefits. Variety now has the scoop on that movie, which will be staring Ashton Kutcher and Natalie Portman. The script is being written by Elizabeth Meriwether, the youngest member of the so called “Fempire”, a group of women screenwriters including Diablo Cody (Juno) and Lorene Scafaria (Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist).
The story is somewhat the opposite of When Harry Met Sally, with two people having a purely sexual relationship which begins to blossom into something deeper. The film has a tentative release date of January 7, 2011. The film is set to be produced by Reitman’s own Montecito Picture Co., as well as Spyglass Entertainment and Cold Spring Pictures. We’ll give you more on the film as we hear of it.
Ivan Reitman’s confirmed this past January that he was directing Ghostbusters III, so the news that Columbia wants a younger director to take on the project is pretty shocking. Vulture is now reporting that Columbia is looking to take the project in a somewhat different direction, one that doesn’t involve Reitman.
The third film is currently being written by The Office writers Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, and it’s been rumored since the start of development that the plan would be to involve a younger group of Ghostbusters as to reboot the popular franchise. However this plan doesn’t involve Reitman, who is now 63 years old. Columbia is hoping to get a younger director to fill the shoes, like they have with the new Spider-Man director Marc Webb ((500) Days of Summer).
Hit the jump to see why Columbia’s decision to get rid of Reitman could potentially end with the cancellation of Ghostbusters III.
If you’re trying to stay in the dark for as long as possible on Ghostbusters 3, this article ain’t for you. Move along. For the rest of us, Bill Murray confirmed his role as a ghost in the upcoming installment in the franchise. Murray told The Mail:
I’ll come back in Ghostbusters III only if I get to be a ghost. I said to them, ‘I’ll do it if you kill me off in the first reel.’ So now they are going to have me as a ghost in the film.
Sigourney Weaver first let the information slip back in December while she was doing press for Avatar (she also said that Dana’s son, Oscar, would now be a ghostbuster). In an interview last month, Ivan Reitman confirmed he would direct Ghostbusters 3, but when asked about Weaver’s comments, he would neither confirm nor deny them. But back to Murray’s interview with The Mail, you should read the full piece as it’s both insightful and unguarded.