John Candy Was Almost in the Original Ghostbusters

Hollywood is full of "what ifs". Behind nearly any major movie there's a story about an actor who didn't take a role or a director that passed on a film only for the project to become something more than just a brief moment on the silver screen. When it comes to the original Ghostbusters, that iconic film has a few of those moments as well. As it turns out, John Candy was originally up for the role of Louis Tully -- the part played by Rick Moranis in the film.

In Netflix's The Movies That Made Us, they discuss the original 1984 Ghostbusters and talk about how Candy was originally envisioned in the role but ended up not ultimately being part of the film.

"We thought we were going to use John Candy in the Louis Tully role, but for whatever reason the deal didn't come together," casting director Karen Rea said.

"Visual effects art director John Bruno went a bit further, saying that they originally drew in Candy for the storyboards because it was who they thought would play the role.

"Originally in the storyboards we basically drew in John Candy because that was who we heard was going to be this character," Bruno said.

As for why Candy didn't appear in Ghostbusters, that's something that director Ivan Reitman himself addressed in 2014 as part of the 30th anniversary of the film. At that time, Reitman told Entertainment Weekly that Candy didn't take the role because he didn't "get it".

"He didn't like the treatment that I had sent," Reitman said. "He didn't get it. He said, 'Well, maybe if I played him as a German guy who had a bunch of German shepherd dogs.' I said, 'Well, maybe you can do it with an accent, but I don't think all that's really necessary.'"

Dan Aykroyd, who played Ray Stantz as well as co-wrote the film, tells a similar story.

"He didn't like the part," Aykroyd said. "He wanted to play it a completely different way and Ivan didn't agree."

Candy wasn't the only actor who had been envisioned for a specific part in the film, but ultimately didn't participate. The episode also revealed that Pee-wee Herman was the original choice for Gozer in the film.


"At one point they said 'Pee-wee Herman's going to be Gozer," Bruno revealed.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife is set to open in theaters on July 10, 2020.