Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2 has been greenlit and is headed to theaters on December 23, 2023.
Directed by Jason Reitman, Ghostbusters: Afterlife is proving to be the miracle creation the franchise needed to rise again 30 years after Ghostbusters 2 hit the theaters. But what next? Apart from being a rousing success (and earning close to $200 million at the box office), the film has teased storylines, possible arcs, and raised questions that can only be answered by Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2. So, what does the future of the franchise look like?
Here is everything we know about Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2.
GHOSTBUSTER: AFTERLIFE 2 IS OFFICIALLY GREEN LIT
In April 2022, Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2 went from speculation to reality. At CinemaCon, the studio used a closing sizzle reel to announce that the sequel was in the works. No information on the cast, the story , or the release date was revealed.
A sequel already seemed likely. Jason Reitman and other crew were vocal about being willing to return for Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2. Not to mention that Afterlife co-writers Reitman and Gil Kenan signed a major producing deal with Sony, according to Deadline. So, it seemed likely, but the April 2022 announcement made it official.
GHOSTBUSTERS: AFTERLIFE 2 WILL HEAD BACK TO NEW YORK CITY
Jason Reitman has revealed that he already has many plans for the sequel’s storyline. In an interview with Uproxx, the director was questioned about the changing Ghostbusters’ logo on the Ecto-1. In Ghostbusters II the logo is a ghost holding up two fingers but in Afterlife, it reverts to how the logo was in the original Ghostbusters film wherein the ghost is only holding up one finger. This hints that Egon changed the logo sometime after the events of Ghostbusters II.
Apparently, this was not a mistake and was actually a planned plotline that was not covered in the film. Reitman has shared that he plans to cover this question as well as many other ideas in the sequel.
Reitman has also revealed that after bringing back Gozer the Gozerian, he plans on revisiting the franchise’s best villain i.e., Vigo the Carpathian in Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2. During his appearance on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Reitman teased that the sequel may see the comeback of Vigo, the major force of evil in the 1989 sequel, Ghostbusters II.
By the end of the film, the sinister painting of Vigo had vanished and replaced with the one symbolizing the four Ghostbusters protecting baby Oscar. But according to Reitman, there is a “lot of time and opportunity for Vigo The Carpathian to make his return.”
In case the director does bring Vigo back, he plans on basing his return on the fact that his painting in Ghostbusters II was not the only one. “Maybe, he’s riding a horse in another one, maybe, impaling someone in another one,” he explained.
And finally, it looks like Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2 will head back to New York City for this next movie. It makes sense to bring things back to where it all started (franchise-wise) and we are going to get this crew in the Big Apple.
GHOSTBUSTERS: AFTERLIFE 2 CAST WILL LIKELY INCLUDE DAN AKROYD AND BILL MURRAY ONCE AGAIN
Ghostbusters: Afterlife introduced new cast members like Carrie Coon as Callie Spengler, Finn Wolfhard as Trevor Spengler, Mckenna Grace as Phoebe Spengler, and Paul Rudd as Gary Grooberson.
It also brought back original cast members Bill Murray as Peter Venkman, Dan Aykroyd as Raymond “Ray” Stantz, Ernie Hudson as Winston Zeddemore, Sigourney Weaver as Dana Barrett, and Annie Potts as Janine Malnitz.
While the new additions are yet to voice their opinion on Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2, two actors from the original cast have expressed their willingness to reprise their respective roles in a sequel.
In a chat with USA Today, Dan Aykroyd had shared that he wants his character Ray and Bill Murray’s Peter to be killed in the next film and join the ghost of Egon Spengler in guiding the new Ghostbusters. And even if they don’t die, he wants the original Ghostbusters to be present in the next three sequels.
Speaking to RadioTimes, Ernie Hudson has also expressed his desire to return for Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2 and confirmed that given the note on which the third film ended, his character’s inclusion in “what comes next” is definitely confirmed.
And it stands to reason we will see the aforementioned Wolfhard, Coon, and Rudd back though that hasn’t been officially confirmed.
IT WILL RELEASE IN THEATERS ON DECEMBER 20, 2023
With some of the flurry of announcements around Ghostbusters: Afterlife 2, we did get a release date of December 23, 2023. This means it’s shooting for the holiday break release window, perfectly primed as a family movie that parents of the original franchise can enjoy with their children.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife had November 2021 release when it did more than $200 million at the box office. The backs it up a month, but remember that during the original release many theaters still weren’t operating at full capacity.
NETFLIX DEVELOPING A GHOSTBUSTERS ANIMATED SERIES
Giant Freakin Robot originally had this exclusive scoop that an animated Ghostbusters series was in development at Netflix and that has been confirmed by the streamer. It’s being developed by Jason Reitman and will be directed by Chris Prynoski and Jennifer Kluska. Not a ton is known about this adaptation though it is likely to exist in the same universe as the movies for continuity’s sake.