Harold Ramis Talks Ghostbusters 3

Cool Stuff: Ghostbusters-like Mini Vac T-Shirt

MTV was able to get Harold Ramis to talk about the next Ghostbusters movie, which is currently in the development/scripting stage with The Office/Year One scribes Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky working on the script. Ramis has yet to receive a first draft in hand but claims that he has been consulting with the screenwriting duo, along with Dan Aykroyd, Ivan Reitman (who helmed the original film).

The biggest bit of news is that Ramis confirmed that all of the original Ghostbusters will return for the third film if it does happen, and that includes Bill Murray (Dr. Peter Venkman).

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Year One Movie Trailer

the year one

Columbia Pictures has released the full theatrical movie trailer for Year One.  The film stars Jack Black and Michael Cera, as a couple of lazy hunter-gatherers who are banished from their primitive village, and set off on an epic journey through the ancient world. Directed by National Lampoon’s Vacation and Groundhog Day helmer Harold Ramis, and written by Office scribes Gene Stupnitsky & Lee Eisenberg (you know, the guys working on the new Ghostbusters script).

I feel like I should be into this a lot more than I am. The movie is being unofficially billed as “this generation’s Life of Brian”, but I’m not impressed with that I’ve seen thus far. I’m a fan of most of the comic cast, a big fan of the director’s earlier work, and the concept has a lot of potential, but I’m not finding many of the jokes particularly funny or clever. It seems like they chose to go for more of a traditional comedy than play with the abundance of possible biblical jokes. Watch the new trailer after the jump and leave your thoughts in the comments below.
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Super Bowl Sneak Preview: Year One

Columbia Pictures has released a sneak preview of the upcoming Judd Apatow-produced biblical comedy Year One. The film stars Jack Black and Michael Cera, as a couple of lazy hunter-gatherers who are banished from their primitive village, and set off on an epic journey through the ancient world. Directed by National Lampoon’s Vacation and Groundhog Day helmer Harold Ramis, and written by Office scribes Gene Stupnitsky & Lee Eisenberg (you know, the guys working on the new Ghostbusters script).

The Super Bowl sneak preview clip shows Black and Cera’s characters trying to hunt for food, when they run into a bunch of farmers named Cain and Abel (David Cross and Paul Rudd). Watch the clip after the jump.

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First Look: Harold Ramis’ The Year One

We’re still trying to catch up on some of the photos that were released in last week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly. Above is your first look at the upcoming Harold Ramis (Caddyshack, Groundhog Day) biblical comedy The Year One (I’ve heard it has in fact been retitled from Year One to The Year One). When a couple of lazy hunter-gatherers named Zed and Oh (Jack Black and Michael Cera) are banished from their primitive village, they set off on an epic journey through the ancient world.

The film also features Paul Rudd and David Cross, who play Cain and Abel, Hank Azaria as Abraham, Christopher Mintz-Plasse (aka McLovin) as Isaac, and Oliver Platt as a High Priest. Based on an original idea by Ramis, and a screenplay by The Office scribes Gene Stupnitsky & Lee Eisenberg (yes, the guys who are writing the new Ghostbusters movie), The Year One is scheduled to hit theaters on June 19th 2009.

Last week I told you about the Christmas Story fan convention which is being held in Cleveland, in and around the original house which was used in the movie which has now been converted to a tourist attraction. This week I have something possibly even cooler. As many times as I’ve watched A Christmas Story over the years, it doesn’t come close to my love and admiration of the Harold Ramis comedy Groundhog Day. It’s one of my very favorite comedies of all time.

Remember the Bed and Breakfast that Bill Murray‘s character stays at in the film? Well its not actually a bed and breakfast, but instead a 114-year-old Queen Anne-Victorian house in Woodstock, IL (The interiors were actually shot on a soundstage).

In fact, most of the film’s exteriors took place in Woodstock, and not Punxsutawney. There is an actual plaque commemorating the puddle that Bill Murray steps in during the movie (photo thanks to 1heckofaguy). And there is a plaque on a wall declaring it “Ned Ryerson Corner”.

As it turns out, a couple from Milwauke bought the house on 344 Fremont St for $435,000 in March, and are planning on doing a $500,000 renovation to transform the house into a five bedroom bed and breakfast inn.

If all goes well, the Martins hope to open the house as the Royal Victorian Manor this summer. Although I wish they would have taken the movie name of The Cherry Street Inn. The owners hope to make the new Inn “an upscale place with a select clientele” but I honestly think they could make a lot more money marketing it as the Groundhogs Day Bed and Breakfast.

Have maps of movie locations around the town for tourists who come and stay at the Inn. Possibly even have a yearly fan convention, and a screening of Groundhog in the town’s square. Hey, if Christmas Story can do it, Groundhogs Day can do it.

source: UPI, Flickr

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Harold Ramis Updates on Ghostbusters 3

Harold Ramis sent a casual email to the Chicago Tribune over the weekend per confirmation of Ghostbusters 3. He clarified that Bill Murray, who has expressed much hesitation about a second sequel in the past—even preferring to do voice work on a once proposed animated sequel—is game…

“yes, columbia is developing a script for GB3 with my year one writing partners, gene stupnitsky and lee eisenberg.  judd apatow is co-producing year one and has made several other films for sony, so of course the studio is hoping to tap into some of the same acting talent. aykroyd, ivan reitman and i are consulting at this point, and according to dan, bill murray is willing to be involved on some level.  he did record his dialogue for the new ghostbusters video game, as did danny and i, and ernie hudson.  the concept is that the old ghostbusters would appear in the film in some mentor capacity.  not much else to say at this point.  everyone is confident a decent script can be written and i guess we’ll take it from there.
best, harold”

“Some mentor capacity.” Hmmm. We’re still not too clear on Judd Apatow’s role. As much as I respect the guy’s style of comedy, I do hope Ghostbusters 3 is not a signature posse showcase complete with millions of feet of guys freestyling about cocks, bromance and Internet porn. Also, we need to be reassured that Slimer will appear (for one minute, natch) and that Ray Parker Jr. will keep the theme music locked down without threats from Huey Lewis. Oh, and no Vigo Jell-O molds.

UPDATE: The trades are reporting that Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg (co-exec producers/writers on NBC’s The Office) have officially been hired by Columbia Pictures/Sony to pen the script for Ghostbusters 3. The script will reportedly bring together the original cast including Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Bill Murray and Ernie Hudson, Slimer?, though none of the actors have officially signed to reprise their roles. The Hollywood Reporter says that Ghostbusters I and II director Ivan Reitman is “aware and involved” in the project’s development. The “next-gen” storyline has also been confirmed, though no specifics were offered. Read below for further info on this aspect.

The general impression based on years of tentative Ghostbusters 3 rumors is that of a feisty tug-o-war between the original players. Yesterday, Dan Aykroyd parlayed that “two sharp young writers” were working on the script, and expressed hope that Seth Rogen and Judd Apatow would be involved. Today, Pajiba has possibly identified the writers as Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg of The Office (“Job Fair”, “Goodbye Toby”) and this goes along with what Slashfilm has been hearing from a few sources.

Interestingly enough, the site claims that their original script outline was done under-the-radar of star Harold Ramis, yet beloved by Columbia Pictures, even though Stupnitsky and Eisenberg scribed Ramis and Judd Apatow’s 2009 Biblical comedy Year One. So, now the three of them are rumored to be working on a new treatment that’s not sitting well with the studio. Slashfilm cannot confirm this, but it’s interesting nonetheless. Moreover, it’s said that the original script outline was a “next generation” sequel. Rumors were shot down back in July involving Seth Rogen, Paul Rudd, Steve Carrell and Romany Malco. Perhaps we should think younger?

One thing is for sure: With next year’s video game already earning lots of ink, Ghostbusters 3 is being dusted off and proposed as a torch of sorts. When and if confirmed, I think Stupnitsky and Eisenberg’s involvement will be seen is a plus. These are guys who probably love the original film(s) but also appropriately update the material and tone. And let’s hope Rick Moranis’s Louis Tully returns.

Discuss: Do you think these writers are a good fit? Would you like to see the next-gen sequel? And if it’s not Rogen and Rudd, who should join the famed ranks?

Paul Scheer’s Movie Playlist

Tonight on the /Filmcast, we are stoked to be joined by Paul Scheer from MTV’s Human Giant, VH1’s Best Week Ever and the 2009 summer comedy Year One. Tune in live, 10 p.m. EST!!!

Welcome to another edition of the Slashfilm Playlist. This is where we ask writers, directors and stars we dig about their favorite movies and taste in film. This week we have comedian and actor Paul Scheer, whose work on the hit MTV sketch comedy show, Human Giant, is embedded in genre movie culture. Whether he’s sending up Superman 2‘s General Zod with his cast-mates, Aziz Ansari and Rob Huebel, as the omnipotent idiots the “Space Lords,”or playing an actor whose dedication to playing a Worf-knockoff culminates in a permanent (and totally effed) surgical procedure, Scheer makes us do spit-takes. This Playlist proved to be suitably epic.

/Film: Hi Paul. So, why are you nervous about appearing on the /Filmcast?

Paul Scheer: Since Slashfilm’s podcasts are getting so popular on iTunes, Terry Gross from NPR is getting worried you might usurp her throne for most downloads. I heard a rumor that she’s personally executing anyone who appears on the show…I heard Stephen Toblowsky narrowly escaped her death grip, so I’m afraid for my life.

/Film: As soon as we’re finished here, I’ll alert Peter Chen. Both seasons of Human Giant make lemonade out of September 11th, with your huge box office failure, Lil’ 9/11, and the proposed TV series Osama bin Diesel. What is your fave 9/11 movie that does or does not star Nicolas Cage…

Paul: My favorite September 11th film has to be High School Musical, which takes the focus off the events and acts more as an allegory of that day. Sharpay (Ashley Tisdale) is clearly Osama bin Laden, and her attempts to take over the “musical” clearly parallel Al Qaeda’s attacks on America. Tisdale’s fights with Zac Efron (George W. Bush) and Vanessa Hudgens (Mayor Giuliani) teach us an important lesson. No matter what happens to the musical (America), the show must go on. It did and so do we. Thank you Disney Channel for painting a clear and succinct tribute to that day.

/Film: So clear. Among your TV show’s many superlatives is its insurmountable kid death toll. I counted 108 murdered kids in one “Kidtentiary” skit alone. Modern films like Tropic Thunder tend to cop out. Human Giant also has a soft spot for kid villains, including Gage from Pet Semetary. Mr. Paul Scheer, you’re the coach. Who do you draft for your Kid Villain All-Star Team?

Paul: Here’s my team. Michael Oliver from Problem Child. He’s like an evil version of Sam from Different Strokes; Vicki the Robot from Small Wonder (Tiffany Brissette). Although she’s technically good, she’s one malfunction away from being a T-1000; The Grady Daughters from The Shining. Pure Double Trouble. Plus, they are snazzy dressers; Haley Joel Osment in anything, he creeps me out. He’s too in touch with otherworldly phenomena.

Of course, the team’s leader would be the baddest of the bad. Technically he’s not a kid, but he loves teaching kids to be bad: enter Cobra Kai Sensei John Kreese (Martin Kove) from The Karate Kid.

/Film: Nice draft picks. At this very moment, what are your three favorite films of all time? And what movie have you watched more than any other?

Paul: This is always a tough question, but I’m basing my list solely on pure enjoyment and re-watchability. So, basically these are the movies that if they came on TV, I’d stop and watch them no matter what: Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, and Raiders of the Lost Ark. My alternates: Die Hard, Point Break, Goonies, Bad Boys 2, Magnolia, The Jerk and Cool Hand Luke. The movie I’ve probably watched the most…it’s a tie between The Empire Strikes Back and Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins. The latter is just because my parents had HBO and I think they played Remo Williams every day after school for about two years. Sadly, Remo Williams’s adventure began and ended all in one film.

More Playlist after the jump, including Paul’s popcorn-and-M&M’s recipe and Bruce Willis’s sex scenes in Color of Night.

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Rumor Killer: Ghostbuster 3 Casting

Don’t believe those Ghostbuster rumors… A new live-action Ghostbusters film is not in the works. A rumor has been circulating the interwebs that Dan Akroyd, Bill Murray, Harold Ramis and Ernie Hudson had signed on to return for a third film where they would hand off the Ghostbusting duties to the Judd Apatow crew of Seth Rogen, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, and Romany Malco. I’ll admit, that it doesnt sound like a bad idea, at least in best case scenario terms, but it’s completely untrue.

The Ghostbuster 3 rumors began at WonderCon 2008, where an advertisement in the program promised a big Ghostbusters related announcement in San Diego. The announcement never happened, but was expected to be the Ghostbusters video game. But even that is on hiatus now as part of the recently announced Activision cuts. The planned announcement, combined with a Ghostbusters fan contest fueled the current rumor.

Discuss: But now that we’re here, who would you recast in a new Ghostbusters movie?

So, Wassup With John Hughes?

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“Did he make a comeback yet?”

In a recent interview with the L.A. Times, Kevin Smith called ’80s director/’00s recluse John Hughes his “generation’s J.D. Salinger.” I’m not going to get into that comparison, no way, but it’s worth mentioning that Salinger hasn’t written anything in 40 years, whereas Hughes hasn’t done much movie-wise in a decade. He has more in common with Terrence Malick (20 years between Badlands Days of Heaven and The Thin Red Line) than the completely AWOL Salinger.

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Recently, Hughes received a credit under an alias for his, albeit old, story idea for Drillbit Taylor. Sure that film flopped hard, but its release has given the media reason to put out a Hughes APB and it’s hit the Internet pretty hard. Driving home on Monday, I heard a report on NPR about race and the unflappable popularity of Hughes’s character Long Duk Dong from Sixteen Candles. It’s clear that audiences still want the real deal to return, especially during this current hunger for the ’80s and LOL comedy.

As the Times points out, Hughes still maintains select ties to showbiz folk, notably producer and friend Tom Jacobson, and he met with Vince Vaughn a few years ago. I know, big deal, but he’s not exactly chain smoking, shooting guns in his house and sleeping in his bowling alley. Will the man who perfected the affable white goofball in beloved, classic films like Weird Science, Planes, Trains & Automobiles and The Breakfast Club really never write/direct another movie? Ever? You really think so? Even with comedy’s ring leader and producer of Drillbit, Judd Apatow, offering gushers like…

“John Hughes wrote some of the great outsider characters of all time,” says Apatow. “It’s pretty ridiculous to hear people talk about the movies we’ve been doing, with outrageous humor and sweetness all combined, as if they were an original idea. I mean, it was all there first in John Hughes’ films. Whether it’s ‘Freaks and Geeks’ or ‘Superbad,’ the whole idea of having outsiders as the lead characters, that all started with Hughes.”

Apatow uses the same kind words for director Harold Ramis (Caddyshack, Vacation, which Hughes wrote) and now he’s producing Ramis’s arguable comeback film, 2009’s anticipated Year One. So you have to wonder, with all of Apatow’s conecs and influence, has he not mentioned an official return to comedy to one of his biggest inspirations? Jus’ sayin’.

Discuss: Would you like to see John Hughes return, as long as it’s not Curly Sue Squared? Moreover, what are the odds we’ll see it happen?