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Category: Ghostbusters 2

IDW Ghostbusters 101 Trade Paperback Book Review

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Dec. 14, 2017 at 6:37 PM , Categories: Ghostbusters 1, Ghostbusters 2, Books, 2016 Parody Remake

Ghostbusters: Answer The Call (2016). Just the mere mention of the name can cause some people to froth at the mouth. No movie has ever been as polarizing as Paul Feig's disasterpiece. Hell, not even The Phantom Menace - with its "Mannequin" Skywalker, Jar Jar Binks, and Midichlorians - divided its fanbase as much as the "all-female Ghostbusters". If I'm being completely honest, and as objective as possible, I can sum up Feig's film in one word: disappointing. In spite of the way it treats its audience, and especially the loyal Ghostbusters fanbase, I frequently saw glimmers of potential in the film. Of course, the film then (literally) vomited upon those glimmers mere seconds later, several times over. I always felt that if the characters were put in the hands of competent writers, especially ones who love Ghostbusters, that maybe - just maybe - the potential that was there could be realized.

IDW's Ghostbusters 101 trade paperback, which collects all six issues of the same-named comic book series that was released earlier this year, lets us see if my theory is correct, or if the nerd will be keeping the five bucks. Written by Erik Burnham, its a story about the original Ghostbusters (herein referred to as the "Prime Ghostbusters") and their new trainees (the titular "101 Class"), who are visited upon by the the 2016 team (who Sony wants deemed, the "Answer The Call Ghostbusters"). As is already apparent, this book "corrects" one of the biggest faux pas of the 2016 film - it puts all of the teams together!

Artwork is handled by fan favorite Dan Schoening, with colors by Luis Antonio Delgado and Anna Chher, letters by Neil Uyetake and Shawn Lee, and edits by Tom Waltz. Although I am going to try my best to keep spoilers to a minimum, I will not be afraid to go into detail as necessary. With that in mind, here is your pre-requisite SPOILER WARNING if you read any further.

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Ghostbusters: Ectomobile Owner's Workshop Manual Book Review

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Nov. 8, 2017 at 10:30 PM , Categories: Ghostbusters 1, Ghostbusters 2, Books, 2016 Parody Remake

For the past few years, Insight Editions has been publishing deluxe collector's quality hardcover Ghostbusters books. It started with Ghostbusters: The Ultimate Visual History (reviewed here) in 2015, continued with Tobin's Spirit Guide: Official Ghostbusters Edition last year, and continues once more with the recently-released Ghostbusters: Ectomobile Owner's Workshop Manual. This 144-page tome was written by Troy Benjamin and Marc Sumerak, with illustrations by Ian Moores. Longtime members of the Ghostbusters Online Community (trademark pending) will remember Troy as the webmaster of Ghostbusters Headquarters (old school mode). Coming in at a nice size of 8.5" x 11" closed, with full color print on high-quality semi-glossy thick paper, the first two-thirds of the book deals with the original Ghostbusters, while the remaining one-third is about the 2016 film, and the last page is credits.

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Official Ghostbusters Creative Assets

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Feb. 20, 2017 at 11:30 PM , Categories: Ghostbusters 1, Ghostbusters 2, 2016 Parody Remake

It was all supposed to be simple. It was never supposed to be a lot of work.

Unbeknownst to me at the time, back in October 2016, Ghost Corps and Sony released a bunch of "creative assets" for the Ghostbusters franchise on the official site at ghostbusters.com/creative-assets/. Thankfully, I stumbled upon that page just a few weeks ago, because it's since been taken down.

The files included a whole slew of images, sound effects, and effects video files, most of which have been used on official Ghostbusters merchandise and as part of the style guides for both the original movies and the 2016 parody remake. These were high-quality, print-ready, multi-layer files in .psd, .eps, .wav, .pdf, .mov, and .tif formats. Here's the blurb from the page to explain why they were so gracious to make these assets available to the fans.
Hi Ghostbusters fans and content creators! Over the past years, we have noticed and loved all of the amazing videos, art, stories, and more that you have created out of sheer passion for the Ghostbusters franchise. We wanted to say thank you and add some fuel to the fire by providing official source materials to help you create even more amazing Ghostbusters creations. You can explore the containment unit below that includes official Ghostbusters art, graphics, sound effects, 3D effects, and more! Let's see what you've got by using the hashtag #CreativeGB! Brought to you by Ghost Corps.
Being that I'm not graphics-proficient, I asked my compadre, Matthew Jordan to convert the images from the print-ready formats (.psd and .eps) to something more accessible to the average computer user, like me (such as .png or .jpg). I thought he could batch run them through one of his programs and have them outputted lickety-split. I thought wrong. Here's Matt to explain more...
Probably the most stunning thing is finding errors in one of the files. (I'm looking at ga_ca2.psd) Little dots towards the top going across. And a minute later I find more dots. All in the two base layers. I hope to god this was only a mistake for the website and not the whole campaign. There is a lot of money on the line, it would be BS to see this as the standard.

I must say this was one heck of a project. It turns out that really at the end of the day, you're are going to have to find someone else if you want the 4 large psd in actual size. I struggled at 3200 X 2--- size. The main image was made rendered at full res in jpg form. I then shrink them down and then made them tif files (to save them as transparent) as png's can't be in color setup cmyk (Photoshop won't allow me to change it to rgb either). I then cheated them into a blank png file in rgb by dragging them in. So yeah, it was a weird bitch. Had photoshop crash a large number of times while figuring out that it can't save those files as rgb pngs.

Had one computer freeze as well at the end. Mostly from over working it and running out of hard drive space (those things require many gigs if you want them in full size).

Weird little treasure I found in the one file, they had the video game version Logo in there in a turned off layer. Had a bit missing on the left side of the logo, but I fixed her up with the cloning tool. Both Slimers (one without any work, the other with a bit of work) have movable iris' so yeah if you want his eyes a different way it can be done.
Okay, so after a tremendous amount of work, Matthew made them into space-saving transparent PNGs. I then figured that I'd share the images by tossing them up on the Spook Central Facebook page as a gallery. Transparencies were lost, which is not a surprise, and no great loss for Facebook viewing. Unfortunately, the nicely formatted gallery description I included, turned into a big jumbled mess of text. I noticed Facebook doing this months ago, but I thought it was just a problem on my end. Matthew confirmed that it's one of Facebook's many screw-ups.

Since my gallery text was a mess, and since the original images are still available on Sony's servers (even though the Creative Assets page has been deleted), and because Matthew has made his transparent PNG conversions available on the Ghostbusters Wiki, I felt it would be best if I put in a little effort and wrote a Spook Central blog post to help straighten this all out and point you to everything.

Matthew deserves a BIG ROUND OF THANKS for going above and beyond the call of duty to do these conversions.

ORIGINAL FILES - Direct links to the files are in the list at the end of this post. PLEASE BE AWARE that these files are VERY LARGE! You will need over 2 GIGABYTES of space and bandwidth if you want to download them all.

TRANSPARENT PNGS - On the Ghostbusters Wiki, on the Ghostbusters Official Website article. For a VERY LIMITED TIME, Matt uploaded the entire set into this 413 Mb rar file. This file can, and likely will, be deleted without notice. For permanent access to the assets, visit the Ghostbusters Wiki.

PREVIEW IMAGES - On the Spook Central Facebook page.

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Paul's Ghostbusters II Alternate Scenes Theory

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Dec. 4, 2016 at 4:26 PM , Categories: Ghostbusters 2
(storyboard formerly in the collection of producer Michael C. Gross, auctioned off in 2007)

Anybody who knows anything about the making of Ghostbusters II knows that the film went through many changes over the course of its production, and that didn't end when it was shown in the theater. Fans who saw the movie when it was screened theatrically in June 1989 remember seeing scenes that were omitted from the later VHS and laserdisc releases (and all subsequent home video releases). I remember seeing Slimer fly out from the Statue of Liberty at the end of the film (as depicted in the storyboard above), whereas Chris from Proton Charging remembers seeing the scene where Louis's cousin Sherman (played by Eugene Levy) helped get the Ghostbusters out of the Parkview psychiatric hospital.

The Sherman Tully scene is an example of a scene that doesn't work in tandem with another scene that was filmed later. In this case, the scene in the City Hall boardroom where the Mayor fired Hardemeyer and orders the Ghostbusters released from Parkview. The latter replaces the former, and they wouldn't work together in the same cut. The same is true for the Cheech Marin "Titanic" scene, which replaces Venkman delivering that same line to the fire captain outside the museum. All of the interaction with Hardemeyer and the Mayor outside the museum is also replaced by the boardroom scene.

Sony included a semi-common photo from the Sherman Tully scene in their August 2009 update of Ghostbusters.com, which was covered by a post on Proton Charging. In the now-deleted comments from that post, Chris (aka Castewar) commented on that:
# castewar - Posted August 27, 2009 at 12:12 PM
Levy played Louis' cousin that got the GBs out of the psych hospital, but it was cut from video release. I saw GB2 on opening day in Calgary, and the print I watched had that short scene in it, and then it never appeared again. It's driven me nuts for years - my own private Star Wars Holiday Special.
This prompted me to write my own theory on why there's a difference between the "Theatrical Cut" of Ghostbusters II as we remember, and the "Home Video Cut":
When I saw GB2 in the theater I know that I saw Slimer flying out from the statue towards the screen at the end. Of course, that's missing from all home video releases, too.

It makes me wonder why Columbia and/or Ivan would modify the film so greatly for home video and never show the theatrical cut ever again.

I wonder if the Sherman Tully scene was present in the U.S. theatrical prints. If you saw it up there, I'd bet it was shown down here as well. The Sherman scene couldn't exist in tandem with the City Hall boardroom scene, as there would be no need for Sherman to help get the guys out of the psych ward if the mayor already ordered them free ("...and somebody get me the Ghostbusters!"). I just found out from looking at these really expensive original call sheets - that the Prop Store is selling - that the mayor's office scene and the Cheech Marin dock scene were both filmed on the same day: "Thursday 27 April 1989". I don't know if it's normal for a movie to still be in principal photography less than two months before the release date - especially for an effects driven film. But what's interesting is that BOTH of these scenes were scripted to replace other scenes that don't appear on home video: the Sherman scene, the guys outside the museum discussing the Titanic with the fire chief and the Kumbaya singing, and the guys talking to Hardemeyer and the mayor outside the museum. This leads me to think that sometime in early 1989 Ivan decided to cut all of those scenes out, but for most of them it was too late. So he left in what was needed for the story, so the film could make the release date, and filmed the alternate scenes in April, with the idea that he'll fix up the movie as he sees fit for home video.

In other words, all home video releases contain the Director's Cut, instead of the Theatrical Cut. That's my theory.

As for Levy being in the Sherman scene, during one of the Selected Soundbytes interview clips on the Ghostbusters II Electronic Press Kit, Rick Moranis said, "We have Eugene here today, who's Canadian." There some very brief behind the scenes (B-Roll) footage from that scene on the EPK - some stills and video from it are on the GB2 Deleted Scenes: Sherman page on Spook Central.
(Ghostbusters II Call Sheet - April 27, 1989 - sold by PropStore.com in 2009)

Recently, CBR posted an article about Ghostbusters II's ending, and whether Slimer did or didn't fly out from the Statue of Liberty. Honestly, I think the CBR article is full of inconclusive conjecture that does not prove their belief that it's "false". As someone who saw Ghostbusters II in the theater back in 1989, distinctly remembers Slimer flying out from Miss Liberty at the end, and who has been researching and documenting Ghostbusters for 20 YEARS (yes, Spook Central is the longest-running Ghostbusters website), I would not take a claim from a projectionist who got a 33mm print of the film FROM SONY IN 2010 as proof that this is false.

Who's to say that the print he got from Sony was not stricken from the "new final cut" that was used for home video and all subsequent showings after the 1989 theatrical showing? If Sony does not want the original theatrical version from ever being shown again, they're going to make sure that all copies of it - be it VHS, laserdisc, DVD, Blu-ray, 35mm print, digital, etc. - are not going to contain *that* version...EVER!

The only way to prove this one true or false is to find a bootleg Ghostbusters II theatercam VHS from 1989 - my holy grail item!

I believe that the original theatrical cut has never appeared since June 1989 for legal reasons. If my theory holds true, and the home video cut is Ivan's final "final cut", Columbia Pictures may be legally obliged to only distribute that cut for the rest of time. I don't know what Ivan's contract with the studio entails, but I know that he and the main three actors had a lot of power given to them in their contracts, so my idea isn't far-fetched.

Official Ghostbusters Website Updated / Spook Central's Stance On The Reboot - Trailer Coming Soon

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Feb. 15, 2016 at 11:45 PM , Categories: Spook Central, Ghostbusters 1, Ghostbusters 2, 2016 Parody Remake

The official Ghostbusters website has recently been completely revamped with new image galleries for the original two films and the new reboot. The images on display are very large and are some of the highest quality that I've ever seen. As such, I updated and added to the images here on Spook Central on the following pages:
  • Ghostbusters 1 Multimedia - In the Official Photos section, updated these images: gb1_mult_img_offphoto04.jpg, gb1_mult_img_offphoto06.jpg, gb1_mult_img_offphoto08.jpg, gb1_mult_img_offphoto19.jpg; and added the last two images in the section.
  • Ghostbusters 1 Deleted - Added two images of Ray sitting by equipment with LED text display.
  • Ghostbusters 1 Deleted: Pulling Up To Fort Detmerring - Very first image on the page, and the first image of the guys outside of the car, have been replaced with better copies.
  • Ghostbusters 1 Deleted: The Fort Detmerring Ghost - Added brand new behind-the-scenes image of Ray in bed at the very bottom of the page.
  • Ghostbusters 2 Multimedia - In the Official Photos section, updated these images: gb2_mult_img_offphoto13.jpg, gb2_mult_img_offphoto17.jpg, gb2_mult_img_offphoto18.jpg, gb2_mult_img_offphoto20.jpg, gb2_mult_img_offphoto21.jpg, gb2_mult_img_offphoto25.jpg, gb2_mult_img_offphoto26.jpg, gb2_mult_img_offphoto28.jpg.
  • Ghostbusters 2 Deleted - Updated the last Egon/Ray with mood slime image.
If you want to download the full set of images from the official Ghostbusters website, for a LIMITED TIME, you can grab them in this 73 Mb .rar file that was collected by Matthew Jordan. When that file is no longer available, you'll need to download them off the Ghostbusters.com site. Here are the direct links:




I noticed some blurring and editing in the images, just like in The Ultimate Visual History book, which makes me sad. This makes me think that the blurring was done by Sony *before* they gave the photos to Insight Editions. The full list of blurs/edits is below. I did not include extreme cropping, such as the crowd at the bottom of "ghostbusters_1984_image_042.jpg".

ghostbusters_1984_image_017.jpg - Blurred crowd faces; they look like their faces are melted!!!
ghostbusters_1984_image_018.jpg - Text on green truck has been removed. (For comparison)
ghostbusters_1984_image_024.jpg - Temple doors blurred.
ghostbusters_1984_image_025.jpg - Labels on yellow tank on car roof has been blurred out. (For comparison)
ghostbusters_1984_image_026.jpg - Background people's faces blurred.
ghostbusters_1984_image_040.jpg - Blurred firemen faces.
ghostbusters_1984_image_041.jpg - Temple doors blurred. (For comparison)
ghostbusters_1984_image_042.jpg - Elements in the background have been blurred: the green sign on the building and graffiti on the white truck.
ghostbusters_1984_image_058.jpg - Painting blurred.
ghostbusters_1984_image_060.jpg - The labels on the yellow tank on the car were digitally removed. (For comparison)
ghostbusters_1984_image_061.jpg - The name "Sniffer" and the company's name plaque were digitally removed from the equipment Ray is holding. (For comparison)

As someone who likes things in their original form, I absolutely HATE when they do crap like this. Gotta blame the legal department.

As previously stated, some new images from the reboot were added to the official site, but they have not been added to Spook Central. This is because Spook Central will cover the reboot in a limited capacity. I thought that I already gave my stance on the reboot, but I can't find any record of it, so let me use this space to let all of you dear readers know how Spook Central will and will not cover the reboot.

First, let me give my (Paul Rudoff) personal opinion on the reboot movie. Simply put, I find the idea of a female Ghostbusters, as USED IN THIS FILM, to be a gimmick. There are many female Ghostheads who dress up for the various franchises, and I'd much rather see any of them make their own fan film than the "Hollywood Version". And that's putting aside the fact that if this were "real", the team would be more likely to be mixed of both genders than one or the other. It's sad that the overly-PC Extreme Ghostbusters got it right. It doesn't help that I can't stand this director or many of the cast members. I was much more behind the idea when names like Anna Faris and Eliza Dushku were bandied about. Apparently, we can't have female Ghostbusters in their '30s (save for Kate McKinnon), even though ALL FOUR of the original guys were in their '30s when they made the original film. I mean, wasn't the whole reason for the "passing of the torch" idea because the original guys were "too old"? I have nothing against older women, but if you want the rebooted franchise to have legs, you need to put it in the hands of a younger group of women. There are many smart and talented young women in Hollywood. Hell, one of my favorite actresses, Alison Brie, is a huge Ghostbusters fan. I would kill to see her don the jumpsuit and pack, and I think she'd be even more excited at that prospect. Instead, we get Paul Fieg's friend Melissa McCarthy and such simply because they're Fieg's favorites.

That's not to say that I can't be pleasantly surprised by what Feig and company have done. As much as I absolutely hate Jonah Hill - I want to punch him in the face every time I see him, and he completely ruined a whole bunch of movies for me (Forgetting Sarah Marshall being the best example) - I was surprised by how much I liked him in the 21 Jump Street reboot. In fact, I thought that the 21 Jump Street reboot movie was a great way to update an old idea and do it differently instead of simply retreading it. So, I'll have a more firm opinion on the Ghostbusters reboot after I see the real trailer on March 3, 2016. Maybe it'll actually make me interested in the actual film. Right now, the more I see of the upcoming merchandise, I'm actually more interested in the ghosts/demons than the humans.

I've given a lot of thought on how, or even IF, Spook Central will cover the reboot. I'm slowly starting to wind Spook Central down. I've eliminated parts of the site so as to keep the focus on what the site does best. For almost 20 years now, the site has been updated and worked-on by hand by one person. This has its advantages, but it also has its disadvantages, too. Simply put, the reboot would add way too much work for me, and unless it absolutely blows me away, I don't have the passion for it as I do for the classic media. So, I decided that I will cover some of the important elements here on the Spook Central blog/main page. When the trailer drops, I'll post some screens and a review/commentary. When the movie itself comes out, I'll likely post a few words here. Maybe I'll make a post for this or that, but that's generally about it. Most of the official reboot news will be posted on the Spook Central Facebook page, where Matthew Jordan has been really on the ball on it. Matthew posts a lot more on the GB Reboot Appreciation Facebook Page, and he and Michael give in-depth coverage for the reboot on the Ghostbusters Wiki (where I'm also an admin). I'd be more likely to post considerable stuff for the reboot there than I would here.

Finally, the short and pointless 30-second teaser FOR the reboot's trailer was just released (embedded below). Apparently, the Ghostbusters reboot will not feature the Ghostbusters, but will instead be about the police and National Guard. Or maybe this is just a teaser for Sony's sequel to its 1998 Godzilla film. Anyway, the real trailer will be released on March 3, 2016.


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