Screen Media has just announced they’ll be releasing an extended version of their genre documentary Cleanin’ Up the Town: Remembering Ghostbusters, just in time for the Halloween season. The doc takes us back to the making of the classic with behind-the-scenes footage and boasts 46 interviews with cast and crew alongside never-before-seen archive material. The cast and crew talk candidly and reminisce of the magical and chaotic time they spent making one of our all time favorites.
Among the interviews and stories told, we see Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson, and Sigourney Weaver to Annie Potts, David Margulies, William Atherton, Kurt Fuller and Jason Reitman, with Director Ivan Reitman, Producer Michael C. Gross, Visual Effects crew including Richard Edlund, Terry Windell, Dennis Muren and Steve Johnson, musicians Ray Parker Jr and The Bus Boys. They discuss our delicious Stay Puft marshmallow man! It was directed by Anthony Bueno who also helped create Too Hot to Handle: Remembering Ghostbusters II.
The Ivan Reitman helmed cult classic, co-written by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, Ghostbusters tells the tale of Peter Venkman, Ray Stantz and Egon Spengler who work at Columbia University, where they delve into the paranormal and fiddle with many unethical experiments on their students. As they are kicked out of the university, they decide to go into business for themselves as Ghostbusters. They take up residence living in an old firehouse. They supe up and trick out their hearse, and get to the job of ridding New York City of their paranormal predicaments, for a price. After making national news and blamed for causing the demonic disturbances, they’re thrown in jail, only to be released when they mayor takes a chance on them to help save the city.
Unbeknownst to all, a long dead Gozer worshiper (Ivo Shandor) erected a downtown apartment building which is the cause of all the paranormal activity. They find out the building could resurrect the ancient Hittite god, Gozer and bring an end to all of humanity. Who are you gonna call to stop this terrible world-ending menace? You know the answer.
This documentary demonstrates how the filmmakers collectively defied time constraints and all manner of technical challenges to make the movie that changed the film industry forever. Little tidbits and factoids are revealed, like Aykroyd’s script originally had Ghostbusters set in the future and leaned heavily on science fiction, with many parts taking place in outer space. Harold Ramis noted that the original plot dealt with “a hole torn in our reality envelope.”
Reitman convinced him that it should take place in New York, saying, “I said to him, ‘Dan, there’s a great idea here, but I really think it should take place today.” Reitman continues, “It should be in a real city on earth, i.e., New York. All this fantastic stuff will be much more impressive set against the reality that we knew.” John Candy was to play the character of Louis Tully, but the role eventually went to fellow Canadian legend Rick Moranis. I won’t give it all away. See it on the big screen in limited theaters on October 1and on VOD platforms October 5.