We’re a week away, everyone! In seven days, audiences nationwide will get a chance to take a look at the Ghostbusters remake, which has been the source of a particularly ludicrous kind of controversy for much of this year. In anticipation of the film’s release in the UK, Sony Pictures UK has released five short clips from the film, some of which feature familiar scenes from the trailers and previous clips. For instance, there’s an extended scene of the team in the subway tunnels, trying out Kate McKinnon‘s character’s first attempt at a proton pack, as well as clips that show the first trial of the “ghost chipper” and the pitching of Ghostbusters logos by the team’s secretary, Kevin (Chris Hemsworth). You can check out all five clips below.
But, hey, back to that controversy stuff. As anyone who has defended Paul Feig’s movie in a “Hey, let’s see what the movie actually is first!” sort of way will know, the movie has been ambushed both by people who consider the original film some sacred text that cannot be remade and, yes, people who think it’s just plain-old bullshit that the Ghostbusters are now women. I’m not particularly empathetic toward either argument, but at a recent event at Madame Toussad’s for the new attraction Ghostbusters: Dimensions, Ivan Reitman, the director of the original, seemed to show a soft side for the nostalgic faction, while also defending the new film and its cast. Here’s what he had to say about the detractors, the original trailer, and the film itself:
“I think there’s way too much talk about gender [when it comes to this film]…I think that many of the people who were complaining were actually lovers of the [original] movie, not haters of women.”
“I think we got off to a bad start…It wasn’t so much that the trailer was bad or terrible. In its minute and a half, it couldn’t represent what the movie actually is…I think the lovers of the [original] movie felt there was some kind of sacrilege to re-do it, because it was a seminal part of their moviegoing experience as a 7- or 8-year-old…That’s something that can’t be minimized, and I totally respect that love”
“Everybody is my audience. Whether they like what I did or didn’t like it…I’ve certainly had my experience with things that did not work. This movie works, [but] no one’s really seen it.”
I can’t say I blame Reitman for defending fans of his film, but I really must point out that no remake, at least in my memory, has been met with such derision before its release. The closest that I can come up with is Tim Burton‘s Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, which didn’t get half the shade that Feig’s film has been receiving but also came out at a time when social media wasn’t quite so ubiquitous. And though Reitman may very well be right that nostalgia is the primary driving force here, sexism undoubtedly plays a major part of this controversy, and if you don’t believe me, just do a casual search of the initial reactions to the casting on Twitter, Facebook, and elsewhere.
Ghostbusters will arrive in theaters nationwide on July 15th, and July 11th in the UK.
Here are the clips: