Jason Reitman Ghostbusters

If you’re looking for someone to direct a new Ghostbusters movie, who ya gonna call? If you’re Sony, the answer is Jason Reitman – he’s been hired to tackle a secret Ghostbusters film that’s being described as a sequel to the 1989 movie Ghostbusters 2 and reportedly will not be connected to the all-female Ghostbusters: Answer the Call that was released in 2016.

Variety reports that Sony has officially hired Jason Reitman, the filmmaker behind movies like JunoUp in the Air, Thank You For Smoking, Young Adult, and last year’s Tully and The Front Runner, to direct a new movie that’s aiming for a summer 2020 release date. Reitman is also the son of Ivan Reitman, the man who directed the original 1984 classic Ghostbusters and its direct sequel.

“I’ve always thought of myself as the first Ghostbusters fan, when I was a 6-year-old visiting the set. I wanted to make a movie for all the other fans,” Reitman told EW. “This is the next chapter in the original franchise. It is not a reboot. What happened in the ‘80s happened in the ‘80s, and this is set in the present day.”

Jason Reitman has been secretly developing the project for the past few months and working out of the Ghost Corps offices on the Sony lot, which are designed to look like the famous firehouse that served as the Ghostbusters’ headquarters in the original movie.

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This new movie, which the younger Reitman co-wrote with Gil Kenan (the director of Monster House, which /Film’s Peter Sciretta loves), is said to “be a continuation” of Ghostbusters 2. That leads to the obvious question: will Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and Ernie Hudson return to reprise the roles they made famous in the ’80s and ’90s? (Harold Ramis, who played the fourth Ghostbuster, Dr. Egon Spengler, died in 2014.) It’s unclear if the original stars will be back, though it’s unlikely that Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, or Leslie Jones will appear since this movie appears to be completely ignoring the existence of Ghostbusters: Answer the Call.

No plot details for this new entry have been revealed yet, but a report from The Hollywood Reporter’s Borys Kit says the main characters will be four teenagers: two boys and two girls. I’m not sure of the timeline here, but that detail instantly makes me think about the Stranger Things episode where the kids suit up as the Ghostbusters for Halloween, so I wonder if that had anything to do with how this idea came together. Also, the fact that the lead characters are teenagers aligns well with Monster House, an animated movie about a group of kids who discover that their neighbor’s house is a living, breathing monster.

“This is very early, and I want the film to unwrap like a present. We have a lot of wonderful surprises and new characters for the audience to meet,” Reitman told EW.

Ivan Reitman’s production company Montecito Pictures is producing this movie.

“It will be a passing of the torch both inside and out,” Ivan said. “It was a decision he had to come to himself. He worked really hard to be independent and developed a wonderful career on his own. So I was quite surprised when he came to me with Gil and said, ‘I know I’ve been saying for 10 years I’m the last person who should make a Ghostbusters movie, but…I have this idea.’ Literally, I was crying by the end of it, it was so emotional and funny.”

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Finally got the keys to the car. #GB20

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Jason Reitman appeared on The /Filmcast back in 2013 and was asked about directing a Ghostbusters movie one day. You can listen to the full episode, but here’s his response:

“At the end of the day, when people always ask me about directing a Ghostbusters movie, I think the line kind of holds true for any genre film: If I directed a Ghostbusters film, there would be no busting. It would just be like, people talking about ghosts. If I did the Avengers, there would be no action, it would just be the Avengers talking.”

Reitman appeared in front of the camera as Brownstone Boy #2 in Ghostbusters 2, and interestingly, this technically won’t be the first time he’s directed something Ghostbusters-related: in 2012, he directed a Live Read of the original script with Seth Rogen, Jack Black, and Rainn Wilson as Venkman, Stanz and Spengler, respectively.

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