The director of the 2016 Ghostbusters reboot blamed the film’s poor performance on that year’s election cycle. For people who remember the backlash, the fandom had a palpable reaction to the movie’s unveiling and that left quite an impression. Feig was referring to the comments that Trump made in January of 2015 where the soon-to-be presidential hopeful mentioned, “Now, they’re making Ghostbusters with only women. What’s going on?!” The director mentioned it on SiriusXM on Friday when asked about what contributed to the film’s negative reception and the ensuing box office results. In his eyes, everything about 2016 coalesced into that very moment.
“I think some really brilliant author…needs to write a book about 2016 and how intertwined we were with Hillary [Clinton] and the anti-Hillary movement,” Feig explained. “Everyone was at a boiling point. I don’t know if it was having an African American president for eight years that they were teed up, they were just ready to explode. It’s crazy how people got nuts about women trying to be empowered or be in positions they weren’t normally in, and it was an ugly, ugly year.”
Last year, the director explained his reasoning behind the controversial decision to move forward with an all-female cast. He talked through it at Ghostbusters Fan Fest.
“For me, it was I like the idea of starting this new team. And originally, when I thought of it — because the first thing I thought when [Sony] had been asking me was like, ‘I just want to work with the funniest people I know, who are the funniest people I know? All these really funny women that I work with all the time,’” he began. “Then it was like, ‘Should it be their daughters?’ And then I just kind of felt like — and some can decide if I was right or not, some people don’t agree — I thought, why not let them have their own origin story?”
Feig continued, “I love all the technology in Ghostbusters, and I was like, ‘I wonder how that developed.’ I’m a real science nut, so let’s find where that came from, and then have these characters bond and find themselves versus [the technology already existing]. I personally didn’t want them to just be handed, ‘Here’s the technology, go out and do it.’ So for better or worse, I thought it was fun and I’m very proud of the movie.”
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