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Reitman, 67, directed 1984’s original Ghostbusters and its 1989 sequel, but he has agreed to pass the torch to a new filmmaker. The studio has begun a search for that director.
The move is the latest twist in the years-long effort to make a follow-up movie in the supernatural comedy franchise. As THR reported Feb. 25, Reitman and writers Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnisky were finalizing the latest draft of the script but the death of Harold Ramis — who co-wrote and starred in the first two films along with Dan Aykroyd and Bill Murray and was set for a small role in the third film — required tweaks to the script.
Reitman will remain on the project as a producer and he and the studio hope production on the new film will begin in early 2015. Murray is not expected to reprise his role.
Sony has been trying to mount a third Ghostbusters movie for numerous years and has had several versions of the script. But the stickler in the process has always been Murray, who hemmed and hawed about participating and had a strained relationship with Ramis.
Earlier versions of the script, written by Eisenberg and Stupnitsky (with Ramis and Dan Aykroyd overseeing), was to feature both the original Ghostbusters and a new crop of characters.
The more recent scripts shifted the project into more of a reboot than a sequel and featured the original members only in cameos.
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