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Paul Feig Wishes His ‘Ghostbusters’ Remake Hadn’t Turned into a “Cause”

Good or not isn’t the question here, what Paul Feig is recognizing a year-plus later is that his Ghostbusters turned into a “cause”. It’s historically significant in that it was clearly a response to internet rage over inequality in Hollywood from the top execs all the way down to extras. Even so, it may have even been an overreaction. No matter, Feig made the decision to reboot the film with an all-female Ghostbusters team, which turned many mean-spirited and spiteful fans against it before it even hit theaters.

Feig knows this doesn’t make for good entertainment, especially when many filmgoers just want release from the stresses of everyday life. In this new interview with Vulture at their Festival L.A., Feig sounds like he’s bummed out that the film turned into a cause, which wasn’t his intention.

“I think it kind of hampered us a little bit because the movie became so much of a cause. I think for some of our audience, they were like, ‘What the fuck? We don’t wanna go to a cause. We just wanna watch a fuckin’ movie,’” the director says. And he still has mixed emotions about how it all panned out.

“It was a great regret in my life that the movie didn’t do better, ’cause I really loved it,” Feig explained. “It’s not a perfect movie. None of my movies are perfect. I liked what we were doing with it. It was only supposed to be there to entertain people.” But for all his frustration, Feig seems to have kept enough perspective on the movie to joke that beating Star Wars andCaptain America at the Kids’ Choice Awards was a highlight of his year. “The teens are just watching it, not bringing all the baggage.”

Ghostbusters, released in July of 2016, starred Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones as the new comedy troupe who band together to save New York from a paranormal threat. Many fans rebelled, while others lauded the filmmakers for the progressive move. In the end, did it hurt the film? Probably, but we have to start somewhere…



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COMMENTS

58 Comments
  • john

    Paul’s still grasping at straws. The movie’s pretty bad. It didn’t respect the legacy, the props or the iconography of the series.

    Being all-female wasn’t even an issue.. for me. In fact, after 25 years of fake Ghostbusters III news, it was the first idea that made me excited again about the property being resurrected.

    Giving Bill Murray such a laugh-free cameo was an issue. Not having an intriguing villain was an issue. Relying far too much on improv was an issue. A parade of non-stop flavor of the moment comedians in bit parts was an issue. Yes, changing the looks of the proton packs, trap and ECTO-1 was an issue. Not using the Ghostbusters theme in any meaningful way was an issue.

    Paul, you made a dud. I saw it opening weekend in IMAX 3D. The 3D was fun, I chuckled here and there… Okay. Worth it for a one-time summer weekend viewing. Fine for some disposable piece of comedy. However, YOU asked to take on the Ghostbusters mantle. You should’ve delivered more… but you didn’t.

  • Lady Bathory

    Paul Feige didn’t want to turn the film into a cause? Yeah… I mean he was the one who called people misogynists for not liking his idea of an all female cast. The film was bad, plain and simple. The first 15 minutes were ok but then it became a huge CGI mess with very (!) flat jokes.

    Feige is the perfect example of a man attempting to sell a film by calling it feminist. He has no idea what the movement is about and the role of Leslie Jones as “street-wise” angry black woman shows that he’s never heard of intersectionality.

  • Travis_Bickle

    Well…then don’t make the big selling point of your film “but it’s all women!!”
    I’m not sure why in 2017 we are still using gender to try and sell movies. That garbage Wonder Women movie was pandering, just like Ghostbusters. Both movies lacked real content and just hoped people would show up because the main characters are chicks. I really don’t give a shit if it’s a guy or girl kicking ass, just make a good movie!!

    • Calavera

      I agree on Ghostbusters but damn, we must’ve seen a different Wonder Woman movie. I loved it and it absolutely didn’t “lack real content”. Also, WW wasn’t advertised as feminist revelation like it was the case with GB. Too many people get upset when they see women in power (not saying you’re one of them, but it’s a major reason for disliking a movie like Wonder Woman).

      • Travis_Bickle

        I disliked Wonder Woman because it was long and boring. I got sick of people jumping through the air in slow motion. I saw only pandering. She leaves the cowering war mongering men in the trenches as she gallantly strides slapping down the bullets of male oppression. Please…I’ve stepped in deeper puddles. Then again, that’s my own opinion.

    • I actually really enjoyed Wonder Woman and didn’t think it was pandering, but yeah, generally I agree. Gender is too big of a deal at the moment, personally I’m just sick to death of hearing about it every single day. Can’t watch TV, see a movie, play a video game or browse the internet without having gender issues thrusted at you from every angle.

  • Jack Derwent

    People who blame the trolls for this flopping are giving way too much credit to how much power they actually have. The reality was Sony was hoping this would be their next big franchise (they were planning their own ‘cinematic universe’ and everything) and they overestimated how many people were interested in the property (or the people involved for that matter) and spent way too much on the budget.

    • Josh Blitzenbrox Myers

      People were interested in the product. They just put out a shitty product and people responded accordingly.

      Its easy to blame sexists for it flopping, but the truth is it was just a bad film. It wasn’t funny, it wasn’t entertaining, it was cringe inducingly bad and an insult to the original, and that had nothing to do with the cast choices. It had everything to do with the shitty writing, and Paul Feig being too mediocre to realize it

    • Ever since the mainstream media acknowledged trolling as a thing, it’s the excuse for everything.

      Your movie was destroyed by critics? Trolls gave it a bad reputation and ruined it!

      Someone called you out on Twitter for being a dick? Trolls won’t stop cyber bullying me!

      Served someone a thick steaming turd laced with cyanide in your restaurant? Yelp is trying to destroy my business!

  • Pikachu

    An all female cast is fine dude, only the sexists that you let press your buttons have a problem with it, its all the other directorial/studio choices you made that make it shit. From ignoring continuity, to making it action, to all the dancing to the awful Fallout Boy cover

    • I haven’t even see any of it yet bar the original trailer and reading your comment makes me very, very glad I haven’t.

  • Grimphantom

    Feig doesn’t seem to get it, it’s not the cast, it’s the freaking writing! The plot was just bad with bland characters, characters that are so stupid it’s incredible that they still consider putting it at this day of age.

    Doesn’t help also that the villain was mediocre in so many levels, especially when he’s grand scheme is to make the people of New York dance……..The Mask did a better job with that.

    Also that doesn’t help that it had toilet humor…..
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/fe0dbc69402675e87a8050595a5e6466f4741773a5e66f5a3b75fae51683cd02.gif

    Why it needed that? Don’t get why comedies need to relay on toilet humor, so really naive people get a laugh for it? For Sony sake, they better have Feig away from the franchise.

    • zombie84_41

      I think i would of gotten more enjoyment from watching cats and dogs lick each other nutsacks for two hours instead of this steaming pile of worthlessness.

  • zombie84_41

    And I’m wishing this movie was never ever made. Which I’m doing pretty good with. Erasing it from my mind for forever. The writing was garbage, the directing was garbage. The whole movie was bad really bad. IDC if you have women as ghostbusters thats cool but get women who are actually funny none of these women in this movie are funny at all expect Wiig, who actually lost her touch. I never been so pissed at a movie ever but this movie which I’m glad I actually saw at work so I’m glad I didn’t waste money watching it really anger me so much. They need to make a rule or or something if a movie is really bad they need to paid the audience money. It’s only fair.

  • Flu-Like Symptoms

    While there might’ve been certain groups of people angry with an all-female cast just because, I think the main issue among the core audience was them clamoring for a Ghostbusters 3 for so many years and never getting it, then Harold Ramis passed away and ended all those hopes, and Sony responded with rebooting the franchise and changing everything. Fans favorite characters were all replaced, gender irrelevant. But, of course, that didn’t stop the sensationalists from crying foul and making it about something it really wasn’t for the most part.

  • Nicolas Caiveau

    I actually liked the movie. Not loved, it but it was enjoyable to me. At least it wasn’t a remake of the much superior original movie, it was its own thing.

    • filmlover

      i especially enjoyed the 3d version. My daughter and I had real fun at the 3d effects. Definitely added to the experience, IMHO. I can’t even imagine what it must be like to see it in 2D.

  • Dead2009

    He turned it into a cause as soon as people started disliking the trailer, then his feminism took over and called any male that had either a troll or a legit criticism of the movie, sexist.

  • in the words of yoda “and this is why you fail”

  • IWC-3PO

    I still want Amy Schumer as Beetlejuice…

    • Travis_Bickle

      Blasphemy

    • Alex Rodriguez R

      Beetlejuice was funny, not completely disgusting.

    • That is a deeply terrifying thought

  • The Drucifer

    Wasn’t he cheerleading the cause?

  • Jarle Solbakken Fremstad

    Paul Feig seems like an idiot. He calls out men for “not being funny” and is then surprised when he, a man, writes a movie that isn’t funny? Way to prove your own point I guess.. Again, this is HIS point, not mine. Anyone can be funny, regardless of gender. I mean, well, obviously, but apparently not in today’s society.

  • Tyler McPherson

    Then maybe he shouldn’t have turned it into a case to begin with?

  • Josh Blitzenbrox Myers

    For me it wasn’t about a “cause”. It was the fact that it was a shitty movie. The writing was awful, the “comedy” wasn’t funny, and nothing about it felt like the Ghostbusters.

    What I think is sad is that this guy has a built in excuse when it bombed. He can blame sexists, and misogynists on the pretense that it was a good movie that was only hated because it starred women, when the truth is that it was an unfunny, lazy mess, and he’s a poor director that put out a bad film.

    I wasn’t bothered by the female cast in the least. If it would have had the same heart as the original I would have loved it. But it was a dumbed down, cg laden mess of a film that totally failed to capture what made the original film so great. Stop blaming your failure on narrow minded people and realize that you made a lazy cash in

  • Judge Satchmo

    You made a haphazard remake of a near perfect movie. You need look no farther than that.

  • Geno1987

    Oh shutup Paul, you were part of the whole controversy. Insulting the fans calling them basement dwellers who live with their mothers, and they’re msygonists…you just cant accept you made a bad movie and learn from your mistakes.

    • Alex Rodriguez R

      Nobody spelled it out to this imbecile director that “you don’t piss off the audience if you want them to buy tickets.” He must have missed that day in film school.

  • lonestarr357

    Without the endless improv and total nothing of a villain, this could’ve been worthwhile. Oh, well.

  • RedNeoCon

    Wet abortion doesn’t even begin to describe the mess that was Ghostbusters. Melissa McCarthy can be ok, but then she lost weight and now everyone shits on her for not being the “funny fat one’. McKinnon is a total SJW hag. Wiig is the best of the bunch and that’s not saying much in this case. Casting Hemsworth as the secretary was a colossal misstep because the demos skew men instead of women as the viewers of the film and they don’t want to see another half naked man. Leslie Jones is the worst of the bunch. Awkward, out of place. Not to sound a like jerk, but what would have been wrong with say 3 men and 1 woman being cast on the team in a reboot?

    • It would’ve worked with a full female cast if they’d a) chosen better people for the roles and b) not made the humour all about the fact that the cast are women.

      People want more men to find female comedians funny, but it’s hard to when their entire act is about being a woman, or how shitty men are.

  • Mr. Red Right Hand

    when bill murray sends back a shredded script to the studio, maybe you shouldn’t bother making a new Ghostbusters at all…and the film wasn’t even a “cause” because the only reason it got an all female cast was due to BILL MURRAY not returning with the others…that and McKinnon isn’t funny despite her desperate attempts at trying to make socialism mainstream and favorable on sat-live.

  • REC03

    It is weird to me how awful it came out. Personally i think Bridesmaids is one of the best comedies of the past 10 years and Spy was very good. He just wasn’t a good fit for this material i suppose.

    • I wouldn’t say Bridesmaids was one of the best comedies in the past lifetime, but each to their own, haha.

      • Jeff

        Since when does 10 years = lifetime?

  • WOLF

    People are just tired of remakes that pale to the original. Even a remake turns out pretty good, it’s still a waste of time for me.
    There was no reason to remake Ghostbusters. These girls could have picked up after the original group and had their own unique story….and call it Ghostbusters 3. All female cast didn’t matter to most.

    • Yeah or even something corny like “Ghostbusters: The New Generation”. The second they said it was a reboot, all female or not, I wasn’t interested.

      • Alex Rodriguez R

        If anyone remembers there was a cartoon in the mid 90s called “Extreme Ghostbusters” that to this day is divisive amongst fans, Cannot believe Feig thought he could pull this off.

        • I remember Extreme Ghostbusters and having the same feeling about it. I think at this point if there was any minuscule shred of hope left of reviving the franchise, it’s well and truly gone now.

      • huntermc

        Yeah, same here. A reboot was completely unnecessary. They should have continued the continuity and had the new team come together to rescue the original Ghostbusters who were trapped in the ghost realm or something.

  • Anthony Gulino

    bad movie

  • Alex Rodriguez R

    I think that if it had been a good movie it might have shut the detractors up, but given it was a horrible, unfunny movie it bombed.

    Also, it is a bad PR move to piss people off by simply calling them misogynists for not wanting to see a film, it deserved to flop.

    • jackstark211

      So true. I had no care to watch a remake of one of my favorite films and because of that I was a misogynist.

  • sedoi

    Totally misplaced director. It seems he was never even really interested in franchise, and more obsessed with his “message”. Also after I read how he handled movie production, I’m glad there won’t be second one from him. But at lest he understands why it misfired.

  • Daniel Anderson

    BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

  • cduns

    @BradMiska, the period at the end of your first sentence should be inside the quotation mark. There are several other errors throughout. Let me know if you’re looking for a better proof reader.

  • bigval

    It was actually a pretty decent movie but it was dead on arrival due to the unfortunately successful campaign waged against it by bitter MRA types under the guise of a genuine community backlash.

    Sure it doesn’t hold a candle to the original, like 99.9% of all movies made but it was sharp, funny, charming and perhaps the most fantastic looking movie I’ve scene however the actual storyline was pretty weak. A solid 7/10 movie for me, I’ve watched it a few times on BR now.

    • wedellbudwhite

      Really this was the most fantastic looking movie you have ever seen? Jesus it was a mess of poor cgi

      I actually cant believe someone holds that opinion

  • spooky

    They expected women viewers to go and see it and pass on the message that is was some female empowerment film… the thing is; there was no message. It was an okay movie, just not a great Ghostbusters movie. Dan Aykroyd should have bought the property years ago and shopped it somewhere and just did something else with it. Who cares if Murray didn’t want in, could have gone on without him.

  • wedellbudwhite

    maybe Brad the fans turned against it because a lot of fans are sick of remakes (especially one as beloved as ghostbusters) and then become mean when they are told they are sexist when they speak out against said film. If the big thing about your remake is that it changes the sex of the cast ill assume it will be shit. ive never ever watched a film and said this film is awesome but i hope they remake it and change the sex of everyone thats what this really needs. It was just a lazy attempt

    And the director complaining about this is bull Shit they marketed it as a cause hoping that women and feminists would go see it but they didn’t seem to care either and it backfired. It was a unnecessary remake that was shit and deserved to bomb

    I really dont get why you keep defending this film it was a shit blockbuster like most blockbusters.

  • Azwethinkweiz

    What made the OG Ghostbusters so good was that it was essentially lightening caught in a bottle. Hence why the second didn’t fair as well. Feig didn’t really have a chance to begin with and like most people of his ilk, resort to finger pointing and name calling when they are challenged. Nobody is going to allow him to try and backpedal what he did. He was a cheerleader for the whole cause and a movement that essentially (tried to) slaughter James Rolfe for having an OPINION and mind you, it wasn’t a misogynistic opinion by ANY means. Didn’t stop the virtue signaling SJW feminazis, who think they have the moral high ground from attacking any and or everyone who’s opinion doesn’t line up with theirs though.

  • Brad Tyler

    I’m a lifelong fan of the original (like most people on here) and I adore the sequel, but I don’t get the hate for this version. I absolutely loved it! I had such a good time with it in the cinema and went straight out and bought the 3D bluray (VERY cool use of 3D BTW) as soon as it came out. I felt like it played loving homage to the original while still doing it’s own thing. I found it very funny and I walked out of the cinema thoroughly entertained. Each to their own I guess, but I just don’t get the hate. Shame, as I would LOVE a sequel, especially with that ending.

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