By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
Yes, the Duck Dodgers joke is intentional (and off by 300 years), but let’s hope the task of creating a futuristic team of Ghostbusters will be good. Just when fans of this franchise thought they could not hate Sony Pictures, not Paul Feig, even more, perhaps there might be a silver lining coming with an all-new animated series simply titled Ghostbusters: Ecto Force. It’s unlikely to tread on what makes The Real Ghostbusters special.
No extra information is offered in today’s announcement as to what the treatment will be like. Ivan Reitman, the director of the original 1984 blockbuster, is helping to develop the series, and it will be set in the not too distant future of 2050. Ghost Corps, the production company established by him in March 2015 with Dan Aykroyd, Tom Pollock, Ali Bell, Alex Plapinger (and Sony) will be overseeing this project.
Fans will most likely not be seeing the original team of Peter Venkman, Ray Stantz, Egon Spengler, Winston Zeddemore and Janine Melnitz in this new product. If they are alive, either they were put in stasis sometime in the 90’s or they have travelled through a wormhole. They will most likely be acknowledged as the founders of the organization which has no doubt branched out to handle cases all over the world in this future. If this animation becomes too cyberpunk driven, I will come to the belief that the producers no longer have the best intention to continue the franchise. At least the series is not likely to continue the antics of Abby Yates, Erin Gilbert, Jillian Holtzmann and Patty Tolan since it is set nearly 30 years after they set up shop. Continuity matters and the Ghost Corps will have to acknowledge this Feig-created universe to some degree.
I’m willing to give this animation a chance. I just hope the tech jokes will not be terrible. I do not want to hear of too many ghosts in the machine this team will have to exorcise, or even the ghosts in the shell to crack out.
I’m more curious in where Sony Pictures Association is with the Ghostbusters animated movie. Fletcher Moules, better known for the hilariously animated Clash of Clans commercials, signed to direct the movie and this side-project is in good hands. Reitman and Aykroyd are overseeing development. Whether this film will star a new team or have the original cast reprising their roles in the vocal front, I have no worries at all. No date has been given for when this product will see release.