Not a few didn't like the idea of remaking "Ghostbusters", well aware that Columbia Pictures won't listen to them. There have been too many remakes. Unless there is a Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and its box-office gross will be less than what the Marvel Studios expect, then the trend (of remaking old films) will continue. It became too frequent, which made film enthusiasts wonder if Sundance and Cannes would be the venues for original screenplays. It's a case-to-case basis.
In the case of "Ghostbusters:, which hits the theaters on July 15, Paul Feig and Melissa McCarthy are about to press their luck. One more time. The two first collaborated on "Bridesmaids", with a budget of $32.50 million. Kirsten Wiig, who co-wrote the script with Annie Mumolo, played a woman who struggled to get her groove back. (Her bakery closed down, which was followed by her boyfriend leaving her.) Lillian, her best friend, was the only bright spot in her life. And she wanted her to be the bridesmaid in her wedding. It turned out that she wasn't the only one.
Those who followed the career of Kirsten Wiig and Maya Rudolph, who played Annie Mumolo, would suspect that "Bridesmaids" was a full-length feature of a sketch comedy. (Wiig and Rudolph were once regulars of "Saturday Night Live".) True enough, the episodic scenes resulted from instant dislikes between the would-be bridesmaids. Imagine farting after consuming chili Mexican food, but don't ask for details when one of the bridesmaids turned tipsy thirty thousand feet above ground. McCarthy, who played the groom's raunchy sister, stood out.
McCarthy, who was forty years of age during production, might have seen herself in a sitcom after "Bridesmaids". Critics praised her performance. She earned an Oscar nomination. And she starred in her own comedies (directed by Feig). She was plump, which endeared her to the audience. In fact, this defining trait would turn "Spy" into a box-office hit. (And it had nothing to do with co-star Rose Byrne describing her as Miss Havisham who indulged in overeating after a failed relationship.) The native of Plainfield, Illinois might not get another shot at the Oscar, but she achieved stardom at an age when most Hollywood actresses would end up in the small screen or theater.
Chance or coincidence?
Dan Akroyd, who was one of the original members of "Saturday Night Live", co-wrote the script of "Ghostbusters" with Harold Ramis. It was originally a time-travel comedy, which didn't appeal to Ivan Reitman. Why not keep it grounded? Why not New York? It's a city that never sleeps. Different folks would meet in Times Square. And some were weirder than the others.
"Ghostbusters" was a huge hit for many reasons. Reitman's clever direction, a wacky ensemble, and special effects that didn't overwhelm the script. (Some wondered if the film would be better with James Belushi. He could have join the cast if he didn't die before production. It would be pointless, as "Ghostbusters" was successful enough.) Judging from Feig's past works, his remake could be a cheeky update of the original. And McCarthy would keep it engaging as long as she could. ("Spy" became tiresome, if not irrelevant, during the final scenes.) It's also silly to compare Chris Hemsworth to Rick Moranis. (This remake was intended for a particular type of moviegoer.)
Don't be surprised if this remake of "Ghostbusters" would turn into a reboot of the franchise. You might have heard of another remake of "Ocean's Eleven" with an all-female cast. (Frank Sinatra might be dumbfounded.) This may be Hollywood's way of addressing the wide gap between actors and actresses. There was plastic surgery and Botox injection, and then actresses being paid less than their male costars. Remaking and rebooting could be next. Viewers should take notice of the following:
The Magnificent Seven. Antoine Fuqua's remake, which will be released on September 23, would feature actors from different races. This might be what the Wild West was really all about, but it might not be fun watching it. Those who couldn't imagine a Western film with an all-female cast haven't seen "Bad Girls". It received overwhelmingly negative reviews, though.
Die Hard. Angelina Jolie could do a Bruce Willis. Her take might turn out better, but 20th Century Fox may look for a younger actress. Brie Larson perhaps.
Rocky. Sylvester Stallone didn't mind a (young) black actor in attempting to extend this franchise. And the critics loved the outcome. Why not let Ronda Rousey play the part as well? She is right for the role. She has a following. And Jolie is too old for the physically demanding scenes.
Back to the Future. The female counterpart of Marty McFly believed that no teenage boy (in her school ) was good enough for her, so she traveled back in time. She ended up torn between a beefy Greek soldier and a charming artist struggling in Paris.
Star Wars. You might have seen the trailer of "Rogue One".