In February 2014 the co-writer and co-star of Ghostbusters I & II Harold Ramis, who had played Dr. Egon Spengler, passed away. Up until his death, Ramis had been working with co-writer, co-star and creator of Ghostbusters I & II Dan Aykroyd on a third movie in the franchise. However, following Ramis' passing Ivan Reitman, director of Ghostbusters I & II, who had previously been attached, in principle at least, to direct the third movie, stepped down from the director's chair. After over a decade of little to no traction on Ghostbusters III moving past development Ramis' passing and Reitman stepping down as the director finally gave the project the necessary momentum to potentially becoming a reality when Sony Pictures Entertainment actively started a hunt for a new director. Ruben Fleischer, director of Venom and directing duo Christopher Miller and Phil Lord, who were infamously fired from Solo: A Star Wars Story were approached to direct Ghostbusters III, but turned down the project, leading to the Sony chairperson at that time, Amy Pascal (six months before she was fired for mismanagement followed emails leaked in the Sony Hacking Scandal) to meet with Bridesmaids director Paul Feig in August 2014.
Initially, Feig also turned down the opportunity to direct Ghostbusters III, but then subsequently voiced his desire to reboot the franchise with a team of women in the leading roles, as per his preference as evidenced throughout his filmography (Bridesmaids, The Heat, Spy etc.). Despite that Ghostbusters III had a script, a willing production team and most of the surviving cast willing to return Pascal greenlit Feig's proposed genderswapping reboot, even though he had no cast, crew, or script. This started the war between the Ghostbusters fans and those involved in the production of the Ghostbusters reboot, which led to director/co-writer Feig, his co-writer Katie Dippold and his cast turning against the fans, calling them racist, sexist, misogynistic, women haters and lonely middle-aged men living in their mother's basements.
After an infamously negative reaction to the reboots first trailer Feig, Dippold and the movies cast repeatedly proclaimed the movie to be a platform for female empowerment, but their attempts to place the movie on a social pedestal backfired when upon release the movie failed to live up to the social important hype, proving instead to be little more than a lewd, overly referential, one dimensional man-hating caper with little to no respect for the legacy, mythology, and fanbase of the intellectual property it had piggy-backed on. As a result, and also in reaction to the needless and aggressive social platforming the movie failed to earn the required $300 million in worldwide box office sales to warrant any hopes of a sequel, which were further squashed by the overwhelmingly negative reaction to the movie from the fanbase.
With the same type of aggressive social-political genderswapping trending throughout big screen and small screen entertainment (Star Wars Sequel Trilogy, Star Trek Discovery, Oceans 8, Doctor Who etc.), supported by mainstream journalism through fear of social exclusion, it seems only the fans and independent media are willing to voice their honest opinion and the opinion of most audiences. However, it would seem that Sony Pictures Entertainment may have actually done what is seemingly impossible for most Hollywood studios, and actually listened to the fans. This comes with the revelation from Jason Reitman, Ivan's son, via Entertainment Weekly that he is to direct a sequel to Ghostbusters I & II, AKA Ghostbusters III, which is expected to be released in the summer of 2020.
Being promoted thus far as Ghostbusters 2020, the new movie, co-written by Jason Reitman and Gil Kenan (Monster House) is expected to feature elements of Ramis and Aykroyd's proposed movie, which will see the old Ghostbusters team pass on the proton packs to a new, younger team of Ghostbusters with, hopefully, a fitting paranormal antagonist to test their mettle. Although no cast has bee announced as-of-yet we expect Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson, and Sigourney Weaver will most likely return, hopefully to be joined by Bill Murray, Annie Potts, and Rick Moranis.
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