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WIRE Buzz: Ghostbusters: Afterlife sequels?; Jason Blum on Dark Universe; SpongeBob Old Spice
Since we're still nine months away from the hopeful release of Ghostbusters: Afterlife, it's almost impossible to tell whether Sony will order a sequel from writer-director Jason Reitman. That decision is almost always made by way of box office returns. That said, the upcoming film (itself a direct follow-up to 1989's Ghostbusters II) reportedly leaves the door open for supernatural sequels.
"It’s just a lot of fun to see these terrific young actors slinging the old Cadillac around and having the equipment in their hands," Ghostbusters writer and star Dan Aykroyd said during an interview with Entertainment Weekly. "The story that develops from that is scary and funny and heartfelt and also funny. And it feeds into the possibility of more follow-ups with this group and with others who want to join."
Aykroyd will appear in the film alongside his fellow Ghostbusters veterans: Bill Murray, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver, and Annie Potts. All of them are reprising their characters from the first two movies. Harold Ramis, who played Egon, sadly passed away in 2014, but the newcomers, played by Finn Wolfhard and McKenna Grace, are heavily implied to be the beloved character's grandchildren.
Carrie Coon, Paul Rudd, and Bokeem Woodbine are part of the cast as well.
Delayed by the pandemic, Afterlife is slated to open in theaters March 5, 2021. Director Jason Reitman (the son of original Ghostbusters director, Ivan Reitman) co-wrote the film with Gil Kenan.
Universal's Dark Universe of shared monster movies never made it past The Mummy, but if the studio ever decides to go back in that direction, Jason Blum is up for captaining the S.S. Creature Feature.
“I would absolutely accept the task, but I don’t think that’s going to happen because the studio has been developing a lot of the different ones," the Blumhouse CEO told Fandom. "They’re down the road with different people and they made this decision to do it that way so the ship has already sailed. But if they change their mind, I’m in!"
Thanks to the success of Leigh Whannell's The Invisible Man, which Blum produced, Universal is placing a greater emphasis on strong standalone movies, rather than a massive and interconnected sandbox of iconic IPs. Don't worry, though. We'll still see plenty of famous boogeymen and women (like Dracula and the Bride of Frankenstein) hit the big screen in the near future.
Who sells deodorant and body wash under the sea? SpongBob SquarePants! No joke, Bikini Bottom's most famous (and porous) resident is the latest Old Spice mascot — at least for the duration of Sponge on the Run's marketing campaign. There's no word yet on how Isaiah Mustafa and Terry Crews feel about sharing the brand's limelight with the happy-go-lucky fry cook, but we imagine they'll welcome him into the nice-smelling fold with open (and muscly) arms.
"Old Spice has chosen SpongeBob to be the face of the Ultra Smooth lineup with a series of super ridiculous TV ads and social posts," reads the release. "Kicking off this week, SpongeBob fans will join him on an epic voyage from just your average sponge to a chiseled Old Spice Guy that’ll have him flipping Krabby patties with a whole new set of confidence."
You can check out two ads below. Longtime fans of the 'Bob will recognize nods to "MuscleBob BuffPants" and "My Pretty Seahorse."
Earlier this week, it was announced that Sponge on the Run would skip its theatrical release and head straight to on demand and CBS All Access in early 2021.