Movies That Never Were – Ghostbusters III

With the release of the Ghostbusters Reboot upon us today we’re going to have a look at what might have been as plans were most certainly there for a Ghostbusters III featuring the original cast.

The first script for a mooted third film was developed in the mid 1990s by Dan “Ray Stantz” Ackroyd himself and was to be called “Ghostbusters 3: Hellbent.” The plot for this one saw the Ghostbusters teleported from Manhattan to ManHELLtan, a hellish alternative universe that’s a dark parody of Manhatten, and the home dimension of the Ghosts.

This script, which is freely available via the interwebs if you care to look, say Egon and Ray having set the Ghostbusters up as a franchises with dozens of ECTO cars and dozens of Ghostbusters. That shot of ECTO 1 on the Brooklyn Bridge from the first film would be recreated but this time with around 2 dozen ECTO-mobiles in convoy.

Winston Zeddemore is now also a Doctor of Paraphysics thus taking away his everyman charm and Peter Venkman is completely missing in action as Bill Murray wasn’t interesting in reprising his role. The villain of the film would’ve been a character called Luke Shifer (Lucifer – get it? No? Neither did I. Sorry Dan but that is one forced pun!). He’d have been an evil business man in hell based on then famous business man (and now potential next President of America) Donald Trump.

The film would’ve also seen a new younger generation being trained up to take over the Proton Packs from the original (in much the same way as happened in the Extreme Ghostbusters cartoon). Given the fanboy anger at “lady Ghostbusters” being the stars of the reboot it’s interesting that this now twenty year old script featured a female lead for the younger generation of Ghostbusters in the form of a character called Carla who’s one defining characteristic in the script is “Latino beauty.” So er yay?

After reading the script I have to say there are bits that are really REALLY bad and there are bits that are really good. The really good bits felt very familiar and there is a good reason for that. This script, well aspects of it, became part of the basis for the script of the excellent Ghostbusters The Video Game.

When this script went cold around 1999 it wasn’t the end of Ghostbusters III but development did go quiet for a decade.