Thirty years on from the release of Ghostbusters – one of the greatest comedies of all time – new snippets of information about the upcoming third instalment of the franchise have appeared. Courtesy of an in-depth retrospective by Vanity Fair, the principal figures in the production have discussed Ghostbusters 3 and – while most contributions were predictably vague – Sigourney Weaver has confirmed an important plot point.
Referring to the moment that Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman approached her about becoming involved in a new film, she recalled:
“I said, ‘I have one condition – I want my son, Oscar, to be a Ghostbuster.’ And he said, ‘We’ve already done that.’”
This long-awaited third film has been in the works for many years, but finally began to come together during 2013, before the death of original Ghostbuster, Harold Ramis. Following his unfortunate passing, original director Ivan Reitman vacated the helm to serve as producer on the project, along with handling some script work. The principal writer for Ghostbusters 3 is now Etan Cohen (Men In Black 3), who is working closely with Reitman, while Ghostbusters creator Dan Aykroyd oversees their efforts. Aykroyd stated during a 2013 interview that the plot would require the casting of “four new Ghostbusters,” and now, it seems we know that one of them is to be Oscar Barrett – son of Sigourney Weaver’s character, Dana.
This may seem somewhat inconsequential, given the long-held assumption that Ghostbusters 3 would serve as a ‘passing of the torch’ to the next generation, but it goes a bit deeper than that. There has been much coverage of the distinct lack of Bill Murray in this new Ghostbusters movie but, in terms of character, the use of a grown Baby Oscar may represent the inclusion of what could be a Murray-esque role. By the end of Ghostbusters 2, Murray’s Peter Venkman was essentially committed to Dana and her infant son, and any new chapter in the franchise would need to, at the very least, acknowledge the character of Venkman – even if he does not appear. By including Oscar Barrett as a Ghostbuster, the script includes a character heavily influenced by Dr Peter Venkman, and that gives a strong idea of the direction the film could be heading in.
With Aykroyd handing over the principal writing reins to Etan Cohen, Reitman handing over the director’s chair to a new, yet-to-be-named director (Edgar Wright, anyone?), and the intrepid spook-chasers handing over their proton packs to a younger group of actors, could we be looking at something that is essentially a second origin story? Such a structure would allow for appearances by the former cast members who are apparently eager to appear – Aykroyd, Weaver, Ernie Hudson and Rick Moranis – while leaving the door open for a last-minute appearance by Murray. It also allows for the creation of a newly invigorated franchise, if successful.
So, who could fill the role of Oscar Barrett? The character would be in his mid-to-late twenties by the time the film is made, so we can assume every young comedy actor is currently going after what would almost certainly prove to be a break-out role. Perhaps a youthful-looking Jay Baruchel, or even an Adam Devine could deliver the necessary goods? Then, of course, there are the other three vacant slots. Personally, I’m hoping for at least one woman among the new group, but according to a statement from Columbia Pictures President, Doug Belgrad, we won’t be hearing about anything as concrete as casting any time soon:
“We are currently working hard to re-create the magic of the original in order to bring a new Ghostbusters adventure to life.”
In other words, work on the script is ongoing. Though we still have no idea when Ghostbusters 3 will finally find its way onto the big screen, at least now we know who we’re gonna call: Oscar Barrett.
Source: The Guardian