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You can put this story in the “Well I didn’t see this coming” file. Director Bradley Bjornstad has started a Kickstarter campaign to fund a documentary about the never-before-seen original version of Ghostbusters 2, and a possible re-release of the film in its unedited form. As one of the more disappointing sequels in film history – not the worst, mind you, just very disappointing – Ghostbusters II could definitely use a facelift, but it seems highly unlikely that it will happen.
It’s been well-documented that this sequel happened when it did at the behest of Columbia Pictures, which wanted to capitalize on the success of the first film and The Real Ghostbusters cartoon. The original script, written by Harold Ramis and Dan Aykroyd, was tossed for a new version closer to the one seen in the film - but there was still a lot of material left on the cutting-room floor. This bungled process is a good bulk of the reason why Bill Murray hasn’t been interested in returning to the franchise.
Bjornstad aims to create Ghostbusters 2: The Original Vision, a documentary covering the entire pre-production process of the film, focusing on all the changes made from conception to final product. He aims to make it as professional as possible, and has the lofty goal of getting all of the film’s cast and crew involved for interviews. He also hopes to round up excerpts of the original script, storyboards and behind the scenes photographs from the production. While it would be hard enough to get all of the original material, it seems almost impossible for him to get Rich Moranis interested, much less Murray. Ernie Hudson and Aykroyd maybe.
Check out two of the Kickstarter promo videos below.
Bjornstad is also dead set on acquiring all of the cut footage from Sony (much of which has been completed with special effects added) and compiling it all into a cohesive film he’d call Ghostbusters 2: Extended Cut. Some of the deleted sequences involve Moranis’ Louis Tully trying out to become one of the Ghostbusters, and a scene where he tries to capture Slimer. Another scene had Ray possessed by the Vigo painting, and there was another subway scene that featured the Frog Ghost. Surprisingly, Ramis’ fellow SCTV vet Eugene Levy had a small role in the film as Louis’ cousin Sherman Tully. Check out a few deleted scene stills below.
Beyond giving film fans a version of the film that could perhaps put the film back into viewers’ good graces, Bjornstad hopes that this project and the backing it receives could convince Sony to go forward with Ghostbusters 3, something that Aykroyd has been talking about for ages.
With 17 days left to go and just a little over $1,600 raised towards a $100,000 goal (which itself doesn’t even seem high enough to do everything that he intends to do), it has a long way to go, and its chances aren’t good. But maybe some bigwigs will step in and help put it together, Kickstarter or not. If anything, it has to be better than this Ghostbusters documentary. Do you want to see another version of Ghostbusters II? Tell us in the poll below.
Do You Want A New Cut Of Ghostbusters II?