It's been a big news day for Sony Pictures' reboot of the Ghostbusters franchise. Reports emerged some hours ago that the main cast for the upcoming supernatural action/comedy - a roster that includes Bridesmaids costars Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy as well as Saturday Night Live breakouts Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon - is being finalized; and director Paul Feig (Spy) confirmed the development, shortly thereafter.
We learned not too long ago that production on the Ghostbusters reboot is tentatively set to begin June 2015, suggesting the film is being targeted for a 2016 theatrical premiere. Sure enough, Sony Pictures has now staked out an official July 2016 release date, for Feig's and screenwriter Katie Dippold's (The Heat) new spin on the 1980s-born franchise.
The most recent Ghostbusters live-action movie, Ghostbusters II, opened in theaters all the way back in 1989. And for a long time thereafter, the plan was for the third live-action film installment in the series to be a continuation of the mythos established in the previous films, with stars Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, and Ernie Hudson all reprising their lead roles.
However, after years of Murray expressing no interest in such a movie and then Ramis passing away in 2014, Sony ordered a full-blown reboot of the Ghostbusters cinematic brand instead. Enter Feig and his plan for a new team of ghostbusters played by women - one that has (unsurprisingly) ruffled some feathers, be it over Feig's desire to cast funny ladies as the leads and/or the decision to make another Ghostbusters movie at all.
LEGO Movie directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord (who were approached to oversee the Ghostbusters reboot before Feig) are among those who have argued that there is, in fact, much more good material to be mined from the premise of people battling ghosts in an otherwise grounded setting. Time will tell if the talent assembled for the Ghostbusters reboot were the right picks for that job, but right now there certainly seems to be some real potential here (in terms of the people working on both sides of the camera).
Feig's Ghostbusters, as it were, is currently set to open in theaters on the same day as Power Rangers (also a movie reboot of an established geek-friendly property), as well as Sherlock Holmes director Guy Ritchie's King Arthur film. Ghostbusters and Power Rangers seem closer to being equally matched (in terms of commercial viability) than King Arthur does with either of them, so don't be surprised if Warner Bros. blinks first and moves Ritchie's new historical adventure to another date in the future.
Ghostbusters is now scheduled to open in U.S. theaters on July 22nd, 2016.
Source: Box Office Mojo