Dan Aykroyd Talks ‘Ghostbusters 3′ & Beyond; Bill Murray Loses Franchise Rights

Published 2 years ago by

ghostbusters 3 aykroyd murray Dan Aykroyd Talks Ghostbusters 3 & Beyond; Bill Murray Loses Franchise Rights

Ghostbusters 3 is inching closer and closer to becoming more than a subject that people refuse to stop asking Dan Aykroyd about (and he keeps on championing). Etan Cohen (Tropic Thunder, Men in Black III) penned the latest script draft this past summer. Meanwhile, Sony is taking steps that could allow production to begin next year; though, Fall 2013 seems more likely, rather than a Summer start date (as we previously reported).

Aykroyd says that Bill Murray has lost his rights to the property, which accounts for why the other Ghostbusters franchise gatekeepers (see what I did there?) are at last gearing up to move ahead without him. Indeed, Aykroyd is now confirming that the stage could soon be set for future installments after GB3… assuming the latter finally happens, that is.

Here is what Aykroyd told Esquire, on the rights issue:

Well, I have one-fifth of the voice, along with the partners and the other owner of the property, the picture company, and Ivan [Reitman], Billy [Murray], and myself, and Harold [Ramis]. We all have to sign off on it unanimously — uh, I’m not sure Billy does anymore, since he abrogated his rights by sort of, by saying, two years ago he said, “I don’t want to be involved,” and the picture company I think had some clause in there that if he actually passed on the third of fourth offer, he no longer has a view of the franchise. So, that’s for the lawyers to decide. Of course, I’d love to have Billy call me tomorrow and say, “Let’s go to work and start writing.”

There have been a handful of different setups and premises for Ghostbusters 3 over the years, including the ‘Ghostbusters in Hell’ concept that Aykroyd refers to as “Man-hell-ttan” – which might have resembled the plot for Ghostbusters: The Video Game, given what we’ve heard – and a passing-the-torch storyline that Cohen has carried over from the previous draft written by Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky (Year One, Bad Teacher). Not surprisingly, Aykroyd has confirmed the most recent script for GB3 sets the stage for a fourth installment.

To quote Aykroyd directly:

Oh, yes, the one that Etan has written now — with Ivan strongly collaborating with him, and with me doing revisions as needed, and studio input — totally leads to a next one. It feeds into it very organically.

ghostbusters 3 writers bill murray Dan Aykroyd Talks Ghostbusters 3 & Beyond; Bill Murray Loses Franchise Rights

However, it now appears that there is, in fact, a limit to Aykroyd’s patience, when it comes to making a third Ghostbusters movie. He isn’t budging from the claim that Sony has a surefire box office success on its hands – and, to be fair, we can’t argue too much with that assertion – but the actor/writer/vodka connoisseur is now putting an expiration date on his commitment.

Here is what Aykroyd said:

… We can’t wait forever. And now’s the time to tell the picture company, and I’d say this quite publically, it’s time now to sit down and make this movie, or you will lose your main principals, and you won’t be able to make it without us, because we have rights, and now is time to make the movie… You don’t take advantage of that in the next three or four months, I’ll see you in Australia, where we’ll be selling Crystal Head.

Is this a genuine sign that Aykroyd is ready to either go big or go home, when it comes to Ghostbusters 3? He could easily have some under-wraps information on the project’s status, given his intimate involvement; then again, we might end up hearing the same thing from Aykroyd a year from now, so don’t start holding your breath just yet.

More on Ghostbusters 3 as the story develops.


Source: Esquire

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  1. I love “Ghostbusters” and “Ghostbusters 2″, but this just isn’t the same without Venkman. Heck, I’d be upset if they pulled Stantz, Spengler, or Zeddemore. They all just worked well together and the chemistry was incredible. Taking one out..just doesn’t feel right. Plus, I think Bill feels that it’s too late to have the same impact now as it did nearly 30 years ago. Those 2 are classics and you’re really going to have to put together a solid team of new Ghostbusters to keep that impact going

    • Agree. It just wouldn’t be Ghostbuster’s without all of them in it.

    • i know this is a comment 5 months ago but with all the 80′s reboots happening recently and with some on the way (beetlejuice and tmnt) its only a matter of time that the ghostbusters gets green lighted for a bad reboot by a company that doesn’t care what the fans want or think soo what if Aykroyd wants to hand down the torches and reboot the series the right way i’d say let him the franchise is on the brink of getting remade anyways ether if its by dan Aykroyd the right way or by sony the wrong way.

  2. I love Bill Murray..one of my favs. But if he doesnt wanna do it, screw him, kill off the character and bring in someone younger that can match his spirit in the 1st film. Shyt, can even call him his son. Seriously, I could care less if Bill wants to be all high and mighty about doing it

    • Find a match of Bill Murray’s performance from the original Ghostbusters? Did you eat paint chips as a kid?

  3. I’m sad to say, I really don’t care much anymore. The first Ghostbusters was great, the second one only so-so as far as I was concerned. I only saw the second one once and would be hard pressed to even tell you the plot (“Baby in Jeopardy” comes to mind).

    Dan Ackroyd has done a few bits of nice acting work since (“Driving Miss Daisy”), but I don’t know that he’s *funny* anymore. I’m sure Bill Murray still has the smarta$$ thing down, and I’m not sure about Harold Ramis – seems very hit-or-miss. I’d like to be proven wrong of course, maybe they can pull something out again.

  4. Billy made garfield: A tale of two kitties, but wont do ghostbusters 3?
    Dimensia is a growing concern of mine in our older generations….

    • He was contractually locked into Garfield 2, since he’d done the first- which he only agreed to because he thought one of the writers was Joel Coen (as in “Raising Arizona”, “Fargo”, etc), rather than Joel Cohen (as in “Money Talks”, “Cheaper By The Dozen”, etc). He’s stated that he felt so strongly about jumping aboard a Coen script, and was so excited to see what the would do with Garfield, that he signed on without even reading the script.

      Ghostbusters, though, he’s part-franchise owner on, and has said on several occasions that he’ll do it if the script is right. It’s clear that he’s worried this is a cash-grab, and he hasn’t seen anything yet to make him think otherwise. Aykroyd’s comments that if he’d just signed on he could be rolling in a pile of money by now probably isn’t helping things any.

      • if that’s true, that sucks. Those silent ‘h’s can really do damage… assuming Bill Murray’s agent was just as illiterate. BTW SEGASCREAM is the best moniker yet on these here movie sites… kudos.

        • Bill Murray doesn’t have an agent he has a 1-800 number were people can leave messages about scripts. I hear he rarely even checks the messages. Anyway without Bill Murray there is no need to make a third movie, just let it rest.

  5. Part of me is excited about a new Ghostbusters movie, another part is worried that without Bill and with a completely new team replacing the one we know and love, things could get messy.

    Wait and see approach needed here.

  6. Oscar Barrett will replace Peter Venkman, he’s just as wacky. They do a dna test and… he’s Venkman’s!

    • Yeah, but who will they get? Chris Pine? xD I could start running off names of lighter haired actors (Oscar was blonde, if I remember correctly)

  7. BRUNO MARS has to do the theme song for the next Ghostbusters! I think he would come up with the most creative song for the film!

    • Paul, tell me that you are being sarcastic. FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS GOOD PLEASE TELL ME SO!!!! Ray Parker Jr. doing a Huey Lewis facade is just fine. This isn’t a James Bond intro after all.

  8. I don’t see Ghostbusters without Bill… I certainly don’t want to see a “new and hip generation” taking over… -.-

  9. Sigh. I may be jumping to conclusions but all I see is Dan Aykroyd being super eager to get the movie made quickly, regardless of anything, while Bill Murray’s being a lot more level-headed about the whole affair. Can Aykroyd not get enough solid work that he needs another Ghostbusters movie so bad?

  10. On Dec 3rd, some blog site posted this regarding Murray’s involvement, supposibly he’s back ON board..


  11. No Bill = No Laughs

  12. Without Murray it’s not the Ghostbusters. All 5 of them are important but missing one of them -even Winston- wouldn’t be right. I say kudos to Murray for holding out and not doing some cash in on the IP.

  13. Well at least now it sounds like Akryod is coming to his senses and saying “If we don’t do it now I’m not gonna do it” I’d love to see a 3rd but I’d also like to see ALL the actors in it. and if they can’t do that then hang the serries up,as much as I’d hate to see that,

  14. HOLY CRAP… I just came up with the most insane, hilarious situation/story premise that will save Ghostbusters by having Murray jump on board. It’s smart and totally witty… and that’s what Bill wants right? I really do think I have something here.

    The premise is actually quite simple but there are loads of ideas that can stem from it. Including passing the torch and all that.

    Does anyone know how to contact Dan Akryod? Or the team creating it?

    • The ‘passing the torch’ idea was already being thrown around at one point.

  15. There is no Ghostbusters without Murray as Venkman. They should just reboot* the franchise with all new actors & actresses!

    * I hate reboots & remakes, but in this case, I’m all for it!

  16. The new Ghost busters should star Vince Vaughn, Paul Rudd, Will Ferrell, Zach Galifianakis and Kevin Hart. It should be written by Evan Goldberg and Judd Apatow. It should be directed by Todd Phillips. To me, these guys are amongst a group of modern comedians who are the closest to doing the sort of comedy that you used to get from movies like, “Animal House”, “Stripes” and “Ghostbusters”.

    • Ferrell and Galifianakis are terrible choices for a Ghostbusters movie IMO

      My personal choices would be:

      Jack Black
      Chris Pine
      Matthew Gray Gubler
      Tracy Morgan

      Written by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, directed by Ivan Reitman

  17. Just leave it alone. Busters 2 was a stinker. Laughless and lifeless. And without Big Bill any new film will automatically be considered lame.

    • I actually enjoyed “Ghostbusters 2″. It isn’t as good as the first, but I really liked it. Many memorable moments, IMO

  18. Please whatever you do,don’t put Ashton Kutcher in the movie.You will lose alot of money on the movie if he plays any part in it.If anything,then put Charlie Sheen,atleast he is funny.It will be the worst thing for your movie by allowing Ashton Kutcher to play any role.

    • You can get someone funnier and less controversial than Charlie Sheen for a new team of Ghostbusters lol

  19. I think adam sandler or ben stiler would be good and as far as winston maybe the guy name pelle. From the show key and pelle

  20. Yeah, from what i stated about the story premise I have.. it would be passing the torch BUT Murray and the others would still be in at least 2 sequels. Murray would soooo latch onto it, I am tellin ya. That’s way I would like to get whoever’s contact info. I would want at least credit somewhere.. and a few bucks for poptarts… lol

    • Hello, read your comments about having a great idea for Ghostbusters 3. I don’t have Bill’s info, but I can give you Ernie Hudson’s mailing info.

  21. How lame. Why is Bill Murray being so weird about this? So what if Ghostbusters 3 isn’t as good as the others? Wouldn’t it just be fun to be working with Dan Aykroyd again and bringing a classic back to life? Bill Murray needs to get over himself. Most of the indie movies he’s been in over the past ten years have been God awful. Just suit up, lose the ego, and bust them ghosts, Bill!

  22. Get Bill Murray’s younger brother to do to new one. He was good in Moving Violations.

  23. Bill just needs to go with the stream! If he doesn’t make GB3 then it’s his loss. I want my daughter to have that experience of seeing a classic come back from the DEAD!

  24. Yes, Ghostbusters would need to happen soon for Dan Aykroyd…before he dies.

  25. I would love a ghostbusters3 to go ahead,…as for the great Bill Murray like the U2 song says…” With or Without You”,,,.If the film is half as good as game, all fans will be happy…….Ill be first in the Line at opening day Regardless,,,Best regards too all…p

  26. forgive me or forgive me not did’nt they
    have an cliffhanger at the end of the video
    game for an future second instalment and
    dan aykryod said in the making of the video game
    classing it the third movie and it’ll be great
    to see it happen it was just recently that sam raimi
    bruce campbell and robert tappert just leaked an fourth
    evil dead movie and alex winter and keanu reeves also leaked
    bill and ted 3 but it’ll be great to see gb3 though.

    frankie(cool rider) smales

    (frankie smales tv and movie review uk)

  27. ghostbusters 3 is like an uk shopping centre in Bradford
    west Yorkshire in England on one min and off the next and
    patients is running thinner by the hours days weeks and
    months with constant setbacks and problems and recently Harold
    ramis turned 69 and sony execs should start making decisions
    about it’s future and most recently an amature documentarian Bradley
    bjornstad during the summer turned to a crowdfunding site kickstarter
    to get funding for an documentary and extended cut of ghostbusters 2
    but he failed to reach his target of a million and over the festive
    season bojornstad contacted me with new developments for the documentary
    and planning to relaunch the funding for it soon but t least he is getting things into motion and not dilly dally like dan aykroyd is doing with ghostbusters 3.

    Frankie Dandridge smales