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The Ghostbusters, famously, ain’t afraid of no ghost. It says so right there in the theme song.
But, being a Ghostbuster and playing a Ghostbuster in a movie are two different things. Ahead of the Nov. 19 premiere of the new Ghostbusters movie, Ghostbusters: Afterlife, SYFY WIRE spoke with the stars and director and asked if they were afraid of ghosts or not.
Perhaps fittingly, as the director of the movie (and son of the ‘84 Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman), Jason Reitman has the most open mind when it comes to ghosts.
“I’m a believer. I want to know more about the unknown,” he says. “I’m a little more [Ray] Stanz and Egon. I want to look in, I want to know more. I’m not as smart as them, but I still want to know more.”
The cast, for the most part, would rather not have to deal with no ghosts.
“I think if I actually saw one, I would be really scared,” says Carrie Coon, who plays Callie, daughter of one of the original Ghostbusters and mother to main characters Phoebe and Trevor. “I tell myself that I wouldn’t be, that I would be really cool and I could handle it. I’ve had some mysterious encounters and I believe that we don’t know everything about the world so I’m open to the fact that they exist. And if you talk to Dan Aykroyd, boy, you’ll be a believer because Dan Aykroyd is absolutely unshakeable in his belief in ghosts.”
“I don’t think I’d be scared of some of them,” adds Paul Rudd, who plays the ghost-enthusiast science teacher Chad Grooberson. “But, there is some strange dark energy that I don’t really need to be spending my time with. They’re gonna be doing my thing, but I’m not inviting them.”
“No Ouija boards for Paul Rudd, you heard it here first,” Coon jokes.
“Ghosts are so scary!” says McKenna Grace, who plays Phoebe, a geeky kid trying to find her place in the world. Her on-screen brother, played by Finn Wolfhard, who has faced stranger things than ghosts in some of his other roles, admits that he too would probably be scared.
“I wouldn’t say it’s a fear of mine, but if I saw a ghost I’d probably be scared. If you said ‘What are you scared of?’ I wouldn’t say ‘Ghosts,’” Wolfhard explains.
“If I saw a ghost in my house, I would be like ‘You know what, buddy? Make yourself at home,’” says Celeste O’Connor, who plays Trevor’s love interest (and budding ghostbuster), Lucky. “‘Get some snacks. Here’s my bed, you take it, I’ll just go sleep on the couch. We’re cool.’”
Logan Kim, who plays Phoebe’s first real friend, a podcast-obsessed kid who goes by the nickname, uh, Podcast, brings up an important distinction: It depends on the ghost.
“See, now, if it’s a nice-looking ghost, like Slimer or something, I might be like ‘Hey man, how’s it going?’” he explains. “But, if it’s something like the library ghost, I’ll run the other way.
Okay, so according to Kim, Slimer, the gluttonous green glob from the first two movies and countless boxes of Ecto Cooler, is a nice-looking ghost. What about Afterlife’s new ghost, though? We can’t forget about Muncher. What about Muncher?
“He’s kind of a mix, because he looks really creepy and then you see his eyes and they’re so cute,” Kim says, though O’Connor says they would still run.
“Well, he only eats metal so he’s not gonna munch on our limbs and destroy us,” Kim argues.
“I’m not scared of Muncher. Muncher is a sweetheart,” declares Wolfhard, before admitting that “he does shoot bullets at you…”
Even so, “Muncher deserved better,” according to Grace.
Adds Wolfhard, “RIP.”
Ghostbusters: Afterlife opens in theaters on Nov. 19.