Ghostbusters (2016) earned approximately $128 million at the domestic box office against a budget of $144 million. It picked up an extra $100 million overseas, but it’s safe to say that the film underperformed financially. The film’s performance led to questions and speculation about the future of Ghostbusters-related projects. Fortunately, Ivan Reitman (director of the original two films, and producer of the reboot) has a plan for the future. He recently sat down with io9 to reflect on last year’s project and shed some light on his ideas for the franchise. Here’s what he had to say:
On the 2016 film:
“We certainly would’ve loved to have a larger hit. But considering the last film was almost 30 years ago, it really did extremely well. I think the film cost too much, frankly, and that’s the real issue. I personally had other points of view in terms of where the film should go and it was kind of a continuous conversation with Paul [Feig] about that. But Paul was the filmmaker on this one and he’s a very talented director. I wanted to give him enough room to do the film he thought it should be.”
Reitman’s comments are respectful of Paul Feig, but it’s clear the two didn’t always see eye to eye about the project. In Reitman’s producer role, the budget would obviously be a hot issue. The film had a budget normally reserved for the highest of high budget spectacles, and a smaller budget would have translated to a better profit margin had the film performed similarly at the box office.
On future projects:
There will be a new Ghostbusters comic book series, as well as a home virtual reality experience, entitled Ghostbusters VR: Now Hiring.
“I think Ghostbusters is this wonderful [intellectual property] because it has so many storytelling opportunities. And it’s a particularly good one for VR… VR has always been something I’ve been interested in as a storyteller. The rules of VR are quite different in terms of how you use editing, multiple angles, and most important, how you tell the story.”
Launching in 2019 or 2020, there will be a new Ghostbusters animated film, followed by potential live-action films which will all connect to one cinematic universe.
“We jumped into an animated film [after the last movie] and we are developing live-action films. I want to bring all these stories together as a universe that makes sense within itself. Part of my job right now is to do that.”