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Ghostbusters III

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Ghostbusters III was the unofficial title of the proposed third Ghostbusters movie. It went through several revisions and writing teams over a period of about 25 years. It was not greenlit and instead a new Ghostbusters movie became the focus starting in Fall 2014. [1] Sony confirmed through Twitter as well. [2]

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Known Movie Scripts

  • Ghostbusters 3: Hellbent - March 10, 1999 (an unused script done by Dan Aykroyd and Tom Davis)
  • Ghostbusters III - 2008 (Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky collaboration, first known rewrite)
    • Three Drafts
  • Ghostbusters III - 2012 (Etan Cohen, second known rewrite)



As of June 19, 2009 and later September 30th, 2009, Harold Ramis confirmed the movie is not in production, and there's still no clue who is going to play the new Ghostbusters; however he also confirmed all four actors that played the original Ghostbusters have agreed to be part of the new project. Sony is also very interested in it. [3] [4]

In an interview with IGN regarding 2009's Ghostbusters: The Video Game, Dan Aykroyd mentioned that he thinks the game will be touched upon in the new movie. Primarily expanding on the notion in the game that they need new rookies and that the writers for the new movie have been playing and following the development of the game. And he expects the writers will draw off some elements from it. He sites at the time of the interview that the first draft of the third movies script is currently in the works. [5]

In an interview with Breakfast Television Vancouver on September 23, 2010, Dan Aykroyd said the following: [6]

  • Hope to be in business in Spring (2011)
  • The hold up was not Bill Murray, it was a matter of our schedules being open
  • We need younger people to carry the packs and drive the Cadillac
  • Mentions Ray Stantz has issues with his eye, knee, and hip as well as fitting into the jumpsuit.
  • It's about passing the torch to a younger and stronger generation
  • There will be a stronger threat, especially since we're coming out the Kali Yuga [7] into a post-2012 apocalyptic cataclysm
  • When asked about casting, Aykroyd answered he has people in mind
  • They want a young woman in her early 20s and three young men in their early 20s

On August 25, 2011, during an interview with Dennis Miller Radio, Dan Aykroyd stated he hopes to go into production in Spring (2012). [8]

On November 13, 2011, during an interview with Michelle Miller on CBS Sunday Morning to promote his Crystal Head Vodka, Dan Aykroyd stated the script is being refined. [9] [10]

On December 4, 2012, Dan Aykroyd confirmed he and Ivan Reitman have worked on every draft in the past three years. [11]

On March 18, 2014, it was reported Ivan Reitman decided to only return as a Producer in light of the passing of Harold Ramis in February. Reitman said he will work with Sony Pictures Entertainment executive Amy Pascal to find a director for the movie from a short list they are already working on. After they find the director, they will look for the new cast. Reitman hopes to start production in Fall 2014 in New York but felt the beginning of 2015 is more likely. [12] [13]

On April 7, 2014, it was reported Phil Lord and Chris Miller turned down an offer to direct the movie. [14]

On April 8, 2014, Ivan Reitman noted, "A lot of directors are throwing their hats in. We're starting the meetings. We're going to do it." [15]

On May 30, 2014, Ruben Fleischer was reported to be considered as the director. [16]

On June 4, 2014, in an article celebrating 30 years of Ghostbusters, a studio spokesman speaking for Columbia Pictures president Doug Belgrad stated, "We are currently working hard to re-create the magic of the original in order to bring a new Ghostbusters adventure to life" in response to a Ghostbusters III inquiry. [17]

On July 21, 2014, on the Today show, Dan Aykroyd commented the movie is looking to be in pre-production in spring 2015. [18]

In the featurette "Time Is A But A Window: Ghostbusters II and Beyond" from the September 16, 2014 release Ghostbusters 1 & 2 Gift Set (2014), Dan Aykroyd clarified he had written two "really solid" third movie scripts and a third concept, that Sony signed off on, with the late Harold Ramis. While working on the third concept, Aykroyd admitted he hears Ramis' sensibility and often edits his work with a 'What would Harold do?' He reaffirmed hope that the third movie would deal with passing the torch to a new generation. [19]

On February 18, 2015, Dan Aykroyd, while on Unmasked with Ron Bennington on Sirius XM, stated the three drafts of Ghostbusters III were going to be partly salvaged and used. He hoped the Feig reboot would reinvigorate the franchise and help get a " a more conventional third sequel" and "another idea" made. [20]

On May 31, 2015, Paul Feig confirmed he was approached to direct Ghostbusters III several times but turned it down because he couldn't figure out how to do it and wasn't excited about it. [21]

Eisenberg-Stupnitsky Rewrite

In 2008, a possible script was being written by Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky who both wrote "Year One" a comedy that was directed by Harold Ramis.[22] [23]Dan Aykroyd says "the script is commenced early summer in June. Hope to be in production by late fall 2009". [24] [25] For the second draft, Dan Aykroyd completely rewrote the script and included the part he wrote for Bill Murray. [26] The screen play was very Bill Murray-centric but Ivan Reitman recalled during a conversation with Murray during a Toronto Film Festival. Murray was into small roles and was no longer interested in leading roles. [27] Around 2009-2010, Rick Moranis was approached by an associate of Akyroyd and asked if he would work on a third movie. [28] In total, Ivan Reitman, Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis helped them with the script. [29] There were three completely drafts written over a period of 4-5 years. [30]

Cohen Rewrite

On June 6, 2012, during interview on The Late Show with David Letterman, Bill Murray commented, "It's got to be really funny and that first one was so darn funny, it's hard for me... I think we'll try again. I always drag my feet on it, but I think..." [31] On June 30, 2012, Dan Aykroyd mentioned, "new writing staff working on it [the script] now... it's got to be perfect. That's the whole thing. There's no point in doing it unless it's perfect." [32] On July 10, 2012, it was revealed Etan Cohen has been hired to rewrite the script. [33] On September 10th, 2012, while at the Toronto Film Festival, Bill Murray commented, "We'll see. There's another script in process. We'll see if it's good. It's got to be really good y'know because the first one was so great." [34]

On September 22, 2012, at a Crystal Head Vodka signing event in Ottawa, Ontario, Dan Aykroyd revealed he has seen some pages of the new script and did a few changes. He also hinted filming might be done in Canada and when the time comes he would call on the fan community to come to the sets. [35]

On December 4, 2012, Dan Aykroyd revealed Ivan Reitman has been strongly collaborating with Etan Cohen. Aykroyd also worked on revisions when needed. [36]

On March 5, 2013, Dan Aykroyd revealed he's was going to look at some pages of the script by Cohen in the next couple of weeks. Aykroyd reiterated Bill Murray has shown interest in reading a script and there will always be a place for him in the movie. [37]

On April 12, 2013, Dan Aykroyd said "we've got sixty pages" and then went on to confirm once more that Ivan Reitman is on board with the third movie. [38]

On April 23, 2013, Dan Aykroyd revealed half of the screenplay is be completed very soon. Aykroyd thinks the movie should be in production by the fall and be shooting by the new year. [39] On May 13, 2013, Dan Aykroyd revealed he would be meeting with Ivan Reitman on June 7 in Cleveland to discuss the script. [40]

On April 4, 2014 - The Wrap published an article with a 5:57 video [41] The majority of the video is fancast but Jeff Scneider claims they have an agency breakdown of the main roles:

  • Two are young men who will be aged 23-29
    • Jeremy is the young leader.
    • Chris is the son of Peter Venkman.
  • Female lead is Anna and she has a doctorate. Will be a few years older.
  • Older male named Eean who will likely serve as the film's comic relief.
  • The villain named Eniewko.

On June 4, 2014, in an article celebrating 30 years of Ghostbusters, snippets of a phone interview with Etan Cohen was included. Cohen confirmed he and Ivan Reitman are "together for hours every week, working on it [the script] really closely" and reaffirmed that Dan Aykroyd is acting as an 'overseeing Ghostbusters writer emeritus.' [42]

On September 1, 2014, Ivan Reitman confirmed the drafts that he supervised always had a very important female presence. [43]


Little of the plot is known. What is known is it will include old and new Ghostbusters. Numerous Ghostbusters cadets would be involved.

Harold Ramis: "I think we are just going to try and make a good movie. The intention of a sequel is not to give an audience more of what they didn't get enough of the first time. It's to give the audience something that is new. We want them to feel that they are having a new experience of some kind. That becomes a tightrope. Yeah, we definitely are introducing new Ghostbusters. That much is for sure. And there will be inter-dimensional creatures visiting New York. And we will deal with it. That's all I am allowed to say at this point." [44]

The ending would organically feed into a fourth movie. The fifth or sixth would involve the Man-Hell-ttan concept from the Hellbent script. [45]

The new team would be Columbia University students studying and researching particle physics. [46] The Higgs boson, gluons, and mesons from particle theory will provide a scientific base in terms of the storytelling, "to open up to another dimension and have something horrible come through." [47] Modern day anti-matter research and CERN may be a "breeding ground for the paranormal." [48] The dimension Earth resides in, the four planes of existence, length, height, width, and time, become threatened by some of this research being done. Four new Ghostbusters have to solve the problem. Larry King would have a part in the movie talking about paranormal incidents in parts of Manhattan, including Morningside Heights. [49] [50]

The new Ghostbusters would learn how how to use a variety of devices including the 'psychotron and the accelerators' and new stuff such as 'the neuron splitter,' which is going to be the interplaner, and an 'interceptor' -- which would allow them to go from dimension to dimension. [51]

The original Ghostbusters are in a very minor role. [52] The story is focused "more about new people." [53] On March 31, 2014, Ivan Reitman was quoted confirming Ghostbusters III is not a reboot. The story would just focus on new Ghostbusting characters while in contrast, the late Harold Ramis would have had a cameo. [54]

For awhile, the concept was the Ghostbusters cleaned up New York City of all ghosts and went out out business. The concept then shifted to passing the torch to new Ghostbusters. [55]

Tristan Jones worked on previsualization. [56] [57] [58] In a ghost montage scene, Jones drew an entity called the "Meat Bull" Ghost. It originated from a mounted skull on the wall of a steak joint that came to life. The idea was all the meat and Ectoplasm was used to create its body. [59] [60]


Script Writers

  • Etan Cohen
    • Previously Confirmed (July 10, 2012)[61]
  • Lee Eisenberg & Gene Stupnitsky






  1. The Hollywood Reporter 10/8/14
  2. Sony Tweet 10/8/14
  3. Aint it Cool News 6/19/09
  4. Movie Web 9/30/09
  5. IGN YouTube
  6. Aykroyd on Breakfast Television Vancouver 9/23/2010
  7. Wikipedia article on Kali Yuga
  8. Dennis Miller Radio, 53 second mark, 8/25/11
  9. Dan Aykroyd's high spirits page 2
  10. Ghostbusters News Clip 7:30-7:45
  11. Esquire Dan Aykroyd Interview 12/4/12
  12. Deadline Ivan Reitman 3/18/14
  13. Dan Aykroyd Facebook post 3/19/14
  14. /Film "Ghostbusters ’: Phil Lord and Chris Miller May Not Direct" 4/7/14
  15. People magazine Ivan Reitman 4/8/14
  16. The Wrap "Marvel's "Ant-Man": Rawson Marshall Thurber Is Frontrunner to Direct" 5/30/14
  17. Vanity Fair Article 6/4/14
  18. Today 7/21/14
  19. Dan Aykroyd (2014). Ghostbusters 1 & 2 Gift Set (2014) "Time Is But A Window: Ghostbusters II and Beyond" (DVD ts. 13:53-15:23). Columbia Pictures. Dan says: "I've written two really solid third movies that if they were made, they would be successful I think. I had Harold work on both of them. I had the benefit of working with him on the really tangible and concrete third idea that the studio sighed off on. So there's my first two ideas and the one from the studio. Harold worked on all three. And um now we're in the process of taking that idea the studio feels comfortable making and as I work on it and I have been -- I hear Harold's sensibility. It's a psychic thing where's he's speaking to me beyond the grave. It's more 'my character wouldn't say that' or 'we can do something better here' or 'Let's do more research' or 'Let's put these words in these character's mouth' or 'Let's move this scene' This character doesn't exist here, what would Harold do?' What would be be writing here. I have that all the way through as I work on the third concept. Now what movie is going to be made at this point, we're not sure. But it'll hopefully be something that passes the torch to a new generation and picks up so that young people going forward can be a part of it in a new way."
  20. The I Bang, transcript of Dan Aykroyd on "Unmasked with Ron Bennington" on Sirius XM 2/18/15
  21. Slash Film "Paul Feig Turned Down 'Ghostbusters 3' in Favor of the Female-Led Reboot" 5/31/15
  22. Variety 2008
  23. Aykroyd on E! 9/3/2008
  24. Boston 2/2009
  25. WBCN interview
  26. ABC News Q&A 4/23/13
  27. EW Ivan Reitman interview 3/29/14
  28. Heeb Magazine "You Don't Do Liner Notes With The Dead Sea Scrolls": Rick Moranis In Conversation 6/23/13
  29. Deadline Ivan Reitman 3/18/14
  30. Gene Stupnitsky Tweet 11/18/14
  31. Screen Crush 2:07-2:31 mark, 6/7/12
  32. WIVB 4 News article 6/30/12
  33. Variety article 7/10/12
  34. ET Canada via YouTube at TIFF, 2:00-2:08, 9/10/12
  35. The Ghostbusters Podcast YouTube account, "Dan Aykroyd Interview", 9/23/12
  36. Esquire Dan Aykroyd Interview 12/4/12
  37. Clip of 3/5/13 George George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight episode via Ghostbusters News, 1:27 to 2:27 mark
  38. Youtube video: Paparazzi XPosed-Dan Aykroyd walking on streets of Manhattan in New York and talks about Ghostbusters Movie
  39. ABC News Q&A 4/23/13
  40. Short List 5/13/13
  41. The Wrap 4/4/14
  42. Vanity Fair Article 6/4/14
  43. Collider Ivan Reitman interview 9/1/14
  45. Esquire Dan Aykroyd Interview 12/4/12
  46. Ottawa Citizen "Dan Aykroyd returns home to Ottawa to help other actors" 3/16/13
  47. ABC News Q&A 4/23/13
  48. Short List 5/13/13
  49. Larry King Now 5/20/13 Interview with Dan Aykroyd 2:10
  50. Comic Article 5/20/13
  51. MTB "Dan Aykroyd Hints At Ghostbuster ‘Cadets’ In ‘Ghostbusters’ Threequel" 4/13/09 Dan Aykroyd says: "They'll be lots of cadets, boys and girls, who'll be learning how to use the psychotron, the accelerators and all the new stuff, the neuron splitter, which is going to be the interplaner, interceptor and all these great tools that they're going to have, to flip from dimension to dimension."
  52. Deadline Ivan Reitman 3/18/14
  53. EW Ivan Reitman interview 3/29/14
  54. Crave Online Ivan Reitman interview 3/31/14
  55. Wallace, Daniel (2015). Ghostbusters The Ultimate Visual History, p. 222. Insight Editions, San Rafael CA USA, ISBN 9781608875108. Dan Aykroyd says: "For a while the concept for the third movie was that we'd cleaned up all the ghosts in New York and the ghostbusters were out of business. But that's not where we should be going, we should have new ghostbusters doing their thing, being handed the torch by the old. Once people start thinking along those lines, we're going to be able to keep it alive."
  56. tyrannojones Tweet #1 3/9/16
  57. tyrannojones Tweet #4 3/9/16
  58. tyrannojones Tweet #5 3/9/16
  59. tyrannojones Tweet #2 3/9/16
  60. tyrannojones Tweet #3 3/9/16
  61. Variety article 7/10/12
  66. Variety article 7/10/12
  67. Deadline Ivan Reitman 3/18/14

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